Since President Trump’s crackdown on immigration, the immigrant population in areas like the Parkchester community of the Bronx are seeking more knowledge on their rights. Assemblyman Luis Sepulveda is holding workshops in the area to help calm fears.
On March 5, 2017, Sepulveda held a “Know Your Rights” workshop at St Helena’s Church in the Bronx. Sepulveda told reporters at The Bronx Chronicle that the parochial vicar and director of Hispanic Ministry, Father Nelson Henao, approached him in hopes of getting help setting up a workshop for parishioners and area residents who are undocumented and concerned about staying in the country. The workshop consisted of 10 speakers from various city and private agencies including Miriam Bell-Blair, District Attorney Darcel Clark’s Immigrant Affairs Unit Director; the Bangladesh-American Community Council; Surey Miranda-Alarcon, Mayor’s Office of Immigrant Affairs east and south Bronx neighborhood organizer; Oscar Asencio, NYC Commission on Human Rights Director; Jackson Chin, Latino Justice PRLDEF senior counsel; David Mullins, New York Legal Assistance Group supervising paralegal and BIA-accredited representative, and Anthony Alba, Northern Manhattan Coalition for Immigrant Rights attorney. The content of the workshop was not disclosed in the article.
St. Helena’s Church is a Roman Catholic Parish at 1315 Olmstead Avenue, in the Parkchester section of Bronx NY. It was established in 1940, the same year the Parkchester community in the area was developed. Many of the parishioners, who either own or rent apartments in the Bronx NY neighborhood, have come to the U.S. in search of a better life for themselves and their families.
In addition to Sunday Mass, the church offers a variety of classes and events. A list of the upcoming events can be found on their website by selecting an option from the news/events drop-down menu. They also have a Pre-K through 8th grade elementary school.