JOIN THE
PILGRIMAGE TO
CLOSE THE CAMPS

Washington, DC

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What is the National Pilgrimage to Close the Camps?

Our next national action is in spring 2021 in Washington, D.C. Thousands of Japanese Americans and other communities will gather for two days of programs, protest, and healing.

Event Descriptions


Caravan to Close the Camps 

Building on our mission statement to build solidarity amongst allied communities and to support the march and rally, a multi-community Caravan to Close the Camps with a focus on young activists and artists will depart from Little Tokyo, Los Angeles. The caravan will travel through California and the Southwest, stopping at former Japanese American incarceration sites, current detention sites, and historically important community and cultural sites of allied communities and will culminate in a large multi-community protest in Texas. We will work with local on-the-ground groups to conduct memorial ceremonies and stage protest events. We are also working with national partners including Center for Constitutional Rights, American Civil Liberties Union state affiliates, and Detention Watch Network to construct the caravan route and programming. The caravans will be a laboratory and gathering ground for coalition building between allied communities with special attention to supporting emerging organizers and artists.

When Tsuru for Solidarity visited Texas in March 2019, we made a promise to local organizers to return and support their efforts. In the Caravan to Close the Camps, we will return as allies, conduct protests at family detention sites, and hold cross-community Healing Circles for Change.

Information on the National Caravan will be linked here as soon as it becomes available. 


Congressional Education Visits

Our National Steering Committee member Duncan Ryuken Williams asked, “How do paper cranes fly? With a wing of wisdom and a wing of compassion.” While we are in D.C., we will fly our tsuru to our representatives in Congress to educate them about the connections between our own World War II incarceration and present-day immigrant detention facilities and inhumane immigration policies.  


National Protest to Close the Camps

The capstone of our program in D.C. is our protest rally and march. We will start at the Sylvan Theater at the base of the Washington Monument for a rally to lift up our voices to demand humane immigration policies and an end to immigrant detention practices. We will be led by hundreds of our survivors, along with representatives of frontline communities, on a march to Lafayette Square. From there, across the street from the White House, we will present 125,000 tsuru folded by people from across the country. Rev. Duncan Ryuken Williams and other Buddhist and interfaith leaders will also lead a Recalling the Ancestors ceremony through a recitation of names as part of a nationally coordinated effort of Buddhist temples in a ceremony for the Healing of the Nation.  Our rally and march will be accompanied by one hundred taiko drummers plus drummers from allied communities. The rally will also include national speakers and performers from allied communities. 

The National Protest to Close the Camps is free and open to the public. 


Healing Circles for Change

Healing intergenerational trauma has become an embedded element of Tsuru work. 

In all of our work, we believe in bringing together indigenous, undocumented, Black, Brown, Jewish, refugee, Arab/Muslim communities and more; communities that are in the shocks and aftershocks of violence, communities that have been historically pitted against one another to consolidate power. We are intentionally pairing direct action with opportunities to heal intergenerational trauma. The combination of standing together in solidarity against oppression and then holding space for one another has tremendous healing potential. We have learned that this can also be a powerful way to break isolation and to build trust for the ongoing work.

Trained facilitators will lead cross-community, intergenerational Healing Circles for Change where a safe space will be created for participants in small groups to share their stories, strengthen ties across communities, and forge commitment to stand together in the face of oppression. A more detailed description is here


How else can I support? 

If you can’t make it to D.C., there are several great ways you can support!

  1. Fold Cranes! Please consider folding tsuru or holding a folding party. More details on how to fold, how to string, and how to mail in cranes can be found here
  2. Act Local! Email tsuruforsolidarity@gmail.com to get connected to people in your area. 
  3. Donate! We could not do this work without all of our amazing grassroots donors. Your gift, at any level, will have an impact. You can donate online here, email tsuruforsolidarity@gmail.com for information on how to send in a check. And you can support our work by purchasing Tsuru for Solidarity t-shirts and merchandise here!  
  4. Stay in touch! Keep checking our website and social media to find out what we’re up to. Leave your email and we will let you know what we’re up to.

When our survivors and descendants of survivors stand with other communities in resistance and nonviolent civil disobedience, create spaces to listen first, and share our own stories, powerful healing has been unleashed, deep bonds are formed, and new initiatives and inspiration emerge. Please stay tuned to Tsuru for Solidarity for updates.

Due to COVID-19, for health and safety reasons, we have made the difficult decision to postpone the June 5th-7th National Pilgrimage to Close the Camps in Washington, D.C. We also are postponing the Caravan to Close the Camps.
Postponement does not mean we will fall silent. Prison camps are places where people are acutely vulnerable to health complications and disease outbreaks — something we know all too well from the World War II WRA concentration camps. In this context, we are gravely concerned how the COVID-19 pandemic will impact people in ICE custody. Tsuru for Solidarity is therefore joining Detention Watch Network and other organizations to call for ICE to take immediate steps to protect the health and safety of immigrants during this pandemic, including by ending current detention of immigrants and ceasing local ICE enforcement operations.
The dates we had planned to march in DC, June 5-6, 2020, will be a national weekend of physically distanced but socially unified Tsuru for Solidarity actions across the country. We are also developing additional regional and national strategies to deepen and expand our work to close the camps and support directly affected communities. Please stay tuned for more information about our revised plans.

Please watch this space for further information about the days of action that we are planning for June 5-6, 2020. 

What is the National Pilgrimage to Close the Camps?

Our next national action is in spring 2021 in Washington, D.C. Thousands of Japanese Americans and other communities will gather for two days of programs, protest, and healing.

Event Descriptions


Caravan to Close the Camps 

Building on our mission statement to build solidarity amongst allied communities and to support the march and rally, a multi-community Caravan to Close the Camps with a focus on young activists and artists will depart from Little Tokyo, Los Angeles. The caravan will travel through California and the Southwest, stopping at former Japanese American incarceration sites, current detention sites, and historically important community and cultural sites of allied communities and will culminate in a large multi-community protest in Texas. We will work with local on-the-ground groups to conduct memorial ceremonies and stage protest events. We are also working with national partners including Center for Constitutional Rights, American Civil Liberties Union state affiliates, and Detention Watch Network to construct the caravan route and programming. The caravans will be a laboratory and gathering ground for coalition building between allied communities with special attention to supporting emerging organizers and artists.

When Tsuru for Solidarity visited Texas in March 2019, we made a promise to local organizers to return and support their efforts. In the Caravan to Close the Camps, we will return as allies, conduct protests at family detention sites, and hold cross-community Healing Circles for Change.

Information on the National Caravan will be linked here as soon as it becomes available. 


Congressional Education Visits

Our National Steering Committee member Duncan Ryuken Williams asked, “How do paper cranes fly? With a wing of wisdom and a wing of compassion.” While we are in D.C., we will fly our tsuru to our representatives in Congress to educate them about the connections between our own World War II incarceration and present-day immigrant detention facilities and inhumane immigration policies.  


National Protest to Close the Camps

The capstone of our program in D.C. is our protest rally and march. We will start at the Sylvan Theater at the base of the Washington Monument for a rally to lift up our voices to demand humane immigration policies and an end to immigrant detention practices. We will be led by hundreds of our survivors, along with representatives of frontline communities, on a march to Lafayette Square. From there, across the street from the White House, we will present 125,000 tsuru folded by people from across the country. Rev. Duncan Ryuken Williams and other Buddhist and interfaith leaders will also lead a Recalling the Ancestors ceremony through a recitation of names as part of a nationally coordinated effort of Buddhist temples in a ceremony for the Healing of the Nation.  Our rally and march will be accompanied by one hundred taiko drummers plus drummers from allied communities. The rally will also include national speakers and performers from allied communities. 

The National Protest to Close the Camps is free and open to the public. 


Healing Circles for Change

Healing intergenerational trauma has become an embedded element of Tsuru work. 

In all of our work, we believe in bringing together indigenous, undocumented, Black, Brown, Jewish, refugee, Arab/Muslim communities and more; communities that are in the shocks and aftershocks of violence, communities that have been historically pitted against one another to consolidate power. We are intentionally pairing direct action with opportunities to heal intergenerational trauma. The combination of standing together in solidarity against oppression and then holding space for one another has tremendous healing potential. We have learned that this can also be a powerful way to break isolation and to build trust for the ongoing work.

Trained facilitators will lead cross-community, intergenerational Healing Circles for Change where a safe space will be created for participants in small groups to share their stories, strengthen ties across communities, and forge commitment to stand together in the face of oppression. A more detailed description is here


How else can I support? 

If you can’t make it to D.C., there are several great ways you can support!

  1. Fold Cranes! Please consider folding tsuru or holding a folding party. More details on how to fold, how to string, and how to mail in cranes can be found here
  2. Act Local! Email tsuruforsolidarity@gmail.com to get connected to people in your area. 
  3. Donate! We could not do this work without all of our amazing grassroots donors. Your gift, at any level, will have an impact. You can donate online here, email tsuruforsolidarity@gmail.com for information on how to send in a check. And you can support our work by purchasing Tsuru for Solidarity t-shirts and merchandise here!  
  4. Stay in touch! Keep checking our website and social media to find out what we’re up to. Leave your email and we will let you know what we’re up to.

When our survivors and descendants of survivors stand with other communities in resistance and nonviolent civil disobedience, create spaces to listen first, and share our own stories, powerful healing has been unleashed, deep bonds are formed, and new initiatives and inspiration emerge. Please stay tuned to Tsuru for Solidarity for updates.

Due to COVID-19, for health and safety reasons, we have made the difficult decision to postpone the June 5th-7th National Pilgrimage to Close the Camps in Washington, D.C. We also are postponing the Caravan to Close the Camps.
Postponement does not mean we will fall silent. Prison camps are places where people are acutely vulnerable to health complications and disease outbreaks — something we know all too well from the World War II WRA concentration camps. In this context, we are gravely concerned how the COVID-19 pandemic will impact people in ICE custody. Tsuru for Solidarity is therefore joining Detention Watch Network and other organizations to call for ICE to take immediate steps to protect the health and safety of immigrants during this pandemic, including by ending current detention of immigrants and ceasing local ICE enforcement operations.
The dates we had planned to march in DC, June 5-6, 2020, will be a national weekend of physically distanced but socially unified Tsuru for Solidarity actions across the country. We are also developing additional regional and national strategies to deepen and expand our work to close the camps and support directly affected communities. Please stay tuned for more information about our revised plans.
Please watch this space for further information about the days of action that we are planning for June 5-6, 2020. 

“We expect this to be the largest gathering of Nikkei since World War II, when we were forcibly removed from our homes and incarcerated in U.S. concentration camps.”

-Mike Ishii, co-leader of Tsuru for Solidarity

About us 

Tsuru for Solidarity is a nonviolent, direct action project of Japanese American social justice advocates working to end detention sites and support front-line immigrant and refugee communities that are being targeted by racist, inhumane immigration policies. We stand on the moral authority of Japanese Americans who suffered the atrocities and legacy of U.S. concentration camps during WWII and we say, “Stop Repeating History!” 
Never again is NOW. Our mission is to:
  • educate, advocate, and protest to close all U.S. concentration camps;
  • build solidarity with other communities that have experienced forced removal, detention, deportation and separation of families;
  • coordinate intergenerational, cross-community healing circles addressing the trauma of our shared histories.