English Department Sanctuary Working Group: Conversation with Ravi Ragbir

Please join us on October 3rd, from 5-7pm in the NYU English Department Event Space (244 Greene St.) for a talk with Ravi Ragbir about immigration activism, the first amendment, and what the university has to do with it. There will be snacks and refreshments.

Ravi has first-hand knowledge of the deportation system because he is facing removal. He has recently been fighting a first amendment case ICE, who have been unconstitutionally targeting him and other immigrant rights activists because of their role as critics of the immigration system. Such attacks have continued, as demonstrated by the case of José Bello in May 2019.

Ravi Ragbir is a NYC immigrant rights activist who has helped thousands of people as an organizer and now as the Executive Director of the New Sanctuary Coalition of New York. In the last few years Ravi has developed a Pro Se Clinic at NSC that brings together immigrants who are facing deportation and with volunteers who assist them in getting ready for their applications, check-ins and court cases. Up to 150 immigrants attend weekly. Ravi has been called to testify before the New York City Council, he has presented at both local and national conferences, and provides information on immigration to city and state agencies and consulates.  He spearheaded the campaign for New York State legislation to confront the situation of children being brought to New York by ICE and most recently the targeted separation of children from their families.

Side by side image of Ravi Ragbir at Lights for Liberty event.

About the English Department Sanctuary Working Group:
The Sanctuary Working Group at NYU English aims to explore the intersections between social justice practice, the study of literature and culture, and the politics of migration. We look forward to conversations among faculty, undergraduate, and graduate students with interests in literature and immigration, migration, asylum, refuge, sanctuary, decolonization, and activism. We believe that scholarship and practice can be mutually supportive. Consequently, we aim to curate events each semester in which we will put NYU faculty and students into conversation and collaboration with activist groups working on immigrant and migrant rights and issues of detention in New York, and provide opportunities to  discuss the theories behind the different practices of these activist groups, as well as vice versa (the practices behind the theories). We hope that the group will serve as a hub for communication and collaboration among undergraduate, graduate student and faculty groups doing activist work on campus and those doing related work outside of the university. Please contact us if you are doing related work and wish to collaborate – (Kat Addis: kma410@nyu.edu).