February 12, 2020

We’re gearing up for our Day of Remembrance, Day of Action at Northwest Detention Center on February 23rd, and we hope to see you there! This event commemorates the 78th anniversary of the Executive Order that incarcerated 120,000 citizens and immigrants of Japanese descent during WWII. We believe the best way to honor that history is by fighting to end detention sites today, which is why we’re partnering with Tsuru For Solidarity, La Resistencia, and Seattle JACL to say #StopRepeatingHistory and #ShutDownNWDC!

You can learn more about this event on Facebook, but here is everything you need to know if you’re planning to attend. (We’ll also update this page as additional details are confirmed):

Why We’re Protesting NWDC

The Day of Remembrance, Day of Action at NWDC commemorates the 78th anniversary of Executive Order 9066, and the forced removal and incarceration of Japanese Americans that followed. Today, thousands of immigrants and refugees are confined in similar concentration camps. They are subjected to inhumane conditions, family separations, threats of deportation, and countless indignities.

The Northwest Detention Center (NWDC) in Tacoma, WA is one of the largest immigration prisons in the country, with a capacity to hold up to 1,575 immigrants per day. Up to 200 people, many of whom are seeking asylum, are transferred from the US-Mexico border to the NWDC each month. Other people held at the NWDC have lived in the US for years, in some cases for the majority of their lives. While some are deported after only weeks, some are held for months and even years awaiting the outcomes of their deportation cases. Few legal protections apply to these civil detainees, and those held are not entitled to an attorney at government expense; approximately 90% of them move forward in their cases unrepresented.

As survivors and descendants of Japanese American WWII incarceration, we stand united with all those who have suffered the atrocities of U.S. concentration camps, past and present, to say, “Stop Repeating History!”

Learn more and support the work of La Resistencia, who have been organizing to shut down NWDC since 2014: http://laresistencianw.org/shut-down-the-nwdc/

Logistics and Day-Of Details

The program: We are grateful to have some powerful speakers and performers lined up for February 23rd, including organizers from La Resistencia who are on the frontlines of the fight to end the detention and deportation of immigrants, musician Kishi Bashi, and some incredible taiko performers. We will also be joined by Tsuru For Solidarity co-founders Satsuki Ina and Mike Ishii, and national leadership from the Detention Watch Network.

Accommodations: A limited number of chairs and tents will be available to elders and attendees with special needs. We’ve also made arrangements for on-site bathroom facilities and a first aid station. For questions about accommodations and accessibility, please email tsuruseattle@gmail.com.

Transportation: The Northwest Detention Center is located in an industrial area that is not directly accessible by public transit. There is a limited amount of first-come-first-served street parking surrounding the Northwest Detention Center, and additional free parking at the Tacoma Dome Station Parking Lot (a 20 minute walk from the site). The earlier you arrive, the more likely you are to find a spot closer to the site.

We will have volunteers shuttling people between the Tacoma Dome Station and NWDC from 11:30-1, and back to the Tacoma Dome Station starting at 2pm. If you require transportation to the site, look for a Tsuru Shuttle sign at the southwest corner of the Tacoma Dome Station parking garage at the corner of Puyallup Ave and East E Street. You’ll be dropped off in front of NWDC about 1 block north of the stage (see map below), and should return to the drop-off location for a ride back to the Tacoma Dome.

If you are able to drive others to NWDC from Seattle or elsewhere, please fill out this form to volunteer as a carpool driver: https://docs.google.com/forms/d/1cHMDLkFr-iTTgddnS9DZN9PLABAiKcnKxH2SFed0lfA/viewform

If you would like to join a carpool to Tacoma, you can sign up as a passenger here (spots are limited, so please give priority to elders and those with limited mobility or access to alternate transportation): https://docs.google.com/spreadsheets/d/1FE-qIKZC3PRFlfSjOfBvsUTCQYqtBWHDYEDTfoxklvI/edit#gid=353184012

Site layout:

Here is a map of the stage, shuttle drop-off location, first aid station, bathroom facilities, etc. for Sunday: https://densho.org/wp-content/uploads/2020/02/revised-NWDC-site-map.pdf

Links/Social Media:

Please feel free to keep spreading the word!


For social media posting, please tag:

IG and Facebook: @Tsuruforsolidarity @DenshoProject @LaResistenciaNW @SeattleJACL

Twitter: @resistencianw @tsurusolidarity @DenshoProject

Event hashtags: #TsuruForSolidarity #ShutDownNWDC #NoCampsNoCages #CloseTheCamps #StopRepeatingHistory #NeverAgainIsNow

Tsuru Drop-Off Locations

credit: Lauren Sumida

If you would like to contribute folded *and strung* cranes to Tsuru for Solidarity we have finalized two local drop-off sites. Please DO NOT bring cranes to NWDC, as we will not be collecting them during this event.

1. Dale Watanabe at the Seattle University International Student Center (901 12th Avenue, PAVL 160, Seattle 98122), Monday thru Friday between 9-11:00am and 2-4:00pm

2. Lynda Joko in Leschi, Seattle (email jokolyn@gmail.com to arrange drop off)

For more info and guidelines: https://tsuruforsolidarity.org/tsuru-resources/

Show your Tsuru Pride

Tsuru tees are now available for purchase in a range of sizes and colors. Get yours today!