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Long Island Woman Afraid for Her Family in Afghanistan

Plus: Immigrant children heading from border to Westchester, Catholic Charities voices support for Afghan, Haitian refugees

Deanna Garcia

Aug 20, 2021

U. S. Department of State Headquarters by Mark Van Scyoc

This summary was featured in Documented’s Early Arrival newsletter. You can subscribe to receive it in your inbox three times per week here.

Latifa Woodhouse, a Great Neck resident, was desperately waiting by her phone for 48 hours to hear from her family from Afghanistan. She was afraid for her brother, who worked as a U.S. government translator from 2003 to 2006, and his six children. Woodhouse’s family members have been targets of the Taliban before. One of her nephews, a clergyman who met with former President George W. Bush, was executed by the Taliban in 2005. The Taliban also torched her brother’s house that same year because they found out he worked with U.S. reconstruction efforts. U.S. Rep. Tom Suozzi’s office is assisting the State Department with five cases of 19 families, including Woodhouse’s, to help evacuate Afghanistan. Newsday

In other local immigration news…

Immigrant Children from Border Heading to Westchester County

Westchester County Airport has been receiving flights of immigrant children from the border. Former Westchester county executive and Republican candidate for governor Rob Astorino tweeted a video claiming those flights were dropping off migrant children in Westchester. The U.S. Department of Health and Human Services confirmed these claims and said these flights, which are legal, are part of reuniting minors who were separated from their parents. Luis Yumbla, a board member of Port Chester Immigrant Defense, which helps unify these families, said these flights have been going on for months. News12 the Bronx 

Catholic Charities of NY Supports Afghan and Haitian Refugees

Monsignor Kevin Sullivan, executive director of Catholic Charities of the Archdiocese of New York, issued a statement in support of refugees from Afghanistan and Haiti. “Every year, our immigration attorneys and resettlement professionals help people from 100 different countries and five continents to make a new home in the New York metropolitan area,” he stated. Monsignor Sullivan mentioned that CCNY provided immigration assistance to over 650 Haitians and resettled 35 in the past five years. The group has also assisted in resettling and providing immigration assistance to 39 Afghan families. CCNY is currently processing Special Immigrant Visas for Afghan refugees who assisted the U.S. Deanna Garcia for Documented.

“I Know What Pandemic Means” Featured at Rooftop Films 

📍 Documented Film
As a part of NYC Homecoming Week, Rooftop Films is showing free outdoor screenings in all five boroughs from August 14 to 22. Documented and Waterwell’s documentary, “Yo sé qué es pandemia” or “I Know What Pandemic Means,” will be included in the weeklong event. The documentary features compelling stories about New York City Latin American communities’ experiences during the pandemic. Documented wanted to highlight individual stories from our readers while also telling the bigger story of the city through a pandemic. “I Know What Pandemic Means” will air today at 6:30 p.m. at the New Hall of Science in Queens. Click here to RSVP for the free event.



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