By Karin Patiño
The United Now for Immigrant Rights club is back. The UNIR club is about coming together and bringing a voice for the immigrant students and the community.
“We want to be the voice for students here…so by creating this club, we’re doing just that,” said club president Karina Hernandez-Sanchez, criminal justice major at CSU Bakersfield.
The UNIR club ended in 2013 due to lack of membership but has now made a comeback. So, what brought the UNIR club back after four years of inactivity?
The Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals decision is what started it all. Back on Sept. 5, when the Justice Department announced the plan to end the DACA program, Hernandez was inspired to make a change.
“I want to be a voice for those that can’t speak up. The day DACA got shut down, I went up to Professor Santos like, ‘Professor I’m done. We need to do something. Can you help me?’ And by all means, he did,” said Hernandez.
The UNIR club is open to more than just undocumented students and DACA recipients. They want to reach out to anyone affected by their own immigration status, the status of their family members or friends. They hope to become a place where students can unite and feel comfortable with others that are going through the same situation.
“I think it’s time that we actually get our voice heard. We really want to take part in going out to the community and informing people,” said Ana Chavez, business administration major at CSUB.
Chavez is the current club communications coordinator and will be club president next semester.
“Absolutely anybody can join UNIR club. You don’t have to be undocumented at all. If you believe in the cause, if you believe what we’re fighting for, you are welcome to join,” she said.
In their first semester back at CSUB, the UNIR club jumped right into events on campus.
They shared sign-up and informational sheets at immigrant related events in the library. They held a Dream students workshop to help undocumented students file their applications for financial assistance. They also held a club cocoa fundraiser where they sold hot chocolate and pan dulce, which is Mexican sweet bread.
UNIR club had their last meeting of the fall semester on Nov. 30.
Club meetings will restart in the spring semester on Jan. 25 and will be held Thursdays at 4 p.m.
The meeting place is to be determined.
Keep a lookout on their wall poster in the DDH hallway for updated information.
For questions, contact club communications coordinator Brenda Jimenez at firstname.lastname@example.org. or visit their Facebook page UNIR at CSUB.