New York Observes Day of Remembrance

New York Day of Remembrance

Saturday, February 22 from noon until 4:00 p.m.

Japanese American United Church – 255 7th Avenue (between 24th and 25th Streets)

Admission: Free

This Day of Remembrance (DOR) marks the 78th anniversary of the Executive Order during WWII that sent around 120,000 citizens and immigrants of Japanese descent to US concentration camps. The community will remember the history of the unjust incarceration of Japanese Americans and learn ways to prevent such actions from occurring again. Today, thousands of immigrants and refugees are confined in similar concentration camps. They face inhumane conditions, family separations, threats of deportation, and countless indignities. DOR organizers, members of New York’s Japanese American community, and other concerned citizens also gather on this day to demand we #StopRepeatingHistory.

Dr. Satsuki Ina (left) and Afaf Nasher, Esq.

The program features a keynote speech by Dr. Satsuki Ina. A writer, activist, and psychotherapist, Dr. Ina has spent her professional career seeking to understand the long-term impact of collective and historic trauma. She was born in the Tule Lake Segregation Center, a maximum security American concentration camp during WWII.

Afaf Nasher, Esq., Executive Director of the New York Chapter of the Council on American Islamic Relations (CAIR), will also speak. Her involvement with CAIR–NY stems from an enthusiasm to challenge discrimination in all its forms, promote positive activism, and foster an understanding of the Muslim American identity.

Important Notes for Attendees

  • The event starts promptly at noon. The annual candlelighting ceremony, which names each camp, will be at the beginning of the program.
  • Organizers welcome contributions of food and drink for the event’s community potluck. Please feel free to make a monetary donation as well to help with event costs.
  • A limited supply of inaugural Tsuru for Solidarity T-shirts will be available for purchase.

Tsuru for Solidarity Regional Meeting

The Day of Remembrance observance will also serve as a Tsuru for Solidarity regional meeting. Tsuru for Solidarity is a nonviolent, direct action project of Japanese American social justice advocates and their allies working to end detention sites and support communities that are being targeted by racist, inhumane immigration policies. Organizers invite DOR attendees to join the first NYC regional meeting to learn about Tsuru for Solidarity’s objectives and upcoming local and national actions, including the “National Pilgrimage to Close the Camps” in Washington, D.C. on June 5 through 7, 2020.

To RSVP to attend the New York Day of Remembrance, please visit DOR’s Facebook event page.

Featured image: Lauren Sumida created this map using news clippings reporting on the Japanese American incarceration, files from the Department of Justice and War Relocation Authority documenting east and west coast evacuees, as well as excerpts of family letters sent to a Japanese American Issei father who was separated from his family and imprisoned shortly after the attack on Pearl Harbor. A red tsuru (crane) signifies each War Relocation Authority Center.

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