Meriden church hosting immigration speaker

Meriden church hosting immigration speaker

By Leigh Tauss

Record-Journal staff

MERIDEN — The  Unitarian Universalist Church will focus on immigration during its Sunday worship service, focusing on some of the difficulties undocumented immigrants face trying to obtain legal status in the U.S.

Alicia Kinsman will be the keynote speaker Sunday at the church, which has been acting as a sanctuary for undocumented West Hartford resident Sujitno Sajuti since October.

Kinsman, who serves as director and managing attorney for the Bridgeport-based Connecticut Institute for Refugees and Immigrants, will focus on the complexities of the immigration system and the difficulties of obtaining citizenship.

“It basically helps illuminate to the congregation and visitors why, for example, people who have been here for so long haven’t been able to get a Green Card or path to citizenship,” said Rev. Jan Carlsson-Bull. “It really helps make sense of something that doesn’t make a whole lot of sense — the very unjust immigration system we have in this country.”

Sajuti has sheltered at the church since October. He is a former Fullbright scholar originally from Indonesia who has been in the country over three decades.

Carlsson-Bull could not provide any updates on Sajtui’s case, but said he is coping with the situation as best he can.

“It’s frustrating because it’s a certain kind of incarceration,” Carlsson-Bull said. “He cannot leave the building without being at risk of ICE officers picking him up and arresting him.”

The service is open to the public and will take place at 10:30 a.m. Sunday at the church at 328 Paddock Avenue.


Twitter: @LeighTaussRJ


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