Join us on Wednesday, June 12 for a unique In-Person Student Public Art Event

WHAT: In-person Student Public Art-Making Event
by DePaul University Students
WHEN: Thursday, June 12, from 11:30 AM to 1:45 PM
WHERE: Latinx Cultural Center – O’Connell Room 360
at 1036 W. Belden Ave, Lincoln Park

We are very glad to invite you to a special in-person Collaborative Public Art-Making event at the Latinx Cultural Center at DePaul University. Join us from 11:30 AM to 1:45 PM and experience remarkable art projects by students from the “Historical Memory Project: Ni Olvido, Ni Perdón” class. Students will also invite people who attend to join in the art making. This unique event will feature projects that can provide insights into:

  • El Salvador: Sin Tierra, Sin Frutos. Exploring the fight of Trans people.
  • Guatemala: Culture is not for sale. The role of Guatemala’s textiles as a centuries-old form of Indigenous cultural resistance.
  • El Salvador: Rompe La Carcel. Mega prisons, their connection to gang culture, and societal consequences.
  • Guatemala: The Destructive Fruit Company. A look at the infamous Unite Fruit Company’s legacy of colonialism and imperialisms.
  • Honduras: Climate Activists: de la tierra somos, a la tierra regresamos. Exploring land rights through the work of human rights defenders like Berta Cáceres.

This event is the culmination of a collaboration between CRLN and HumanitiesX at DePaul University. In 2023, CRLN was honored with a fellowship by DePaul University, allowing us to work closely with the exceptional professors Susana Martínez and Lydia Saravia. You can read more about this unique and inspiring project HERE.

We look forward to seeing you there. If you have any questions, please reach out to us at, or

En resistencia y solidaridad permanente

Jhonathan F. Gómez

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Support and Learn about our Human Rights Delegation Collaboration with Chicago’s Guatemala Community Leaders

Donate and Learn More, Click Here

We are happy to announce our collaboration with a group of activists and community leaders from the Guatemala diaspora in Chicago. The Maya Ixil Accompaniment Project is a Human Rights delegation to Guatemala, scheduled for July 3rd to 12th, 2024.

The primary goal of this delegation is to provide in-person accompaniment to the Maya Ixil community, whose witnesses and survivors of Genocide will testify during the hearings of the historic Genocide trial for the government period of Fernando Romeo Lucas García from July 1978 to March 1982. The trial, which began in March 2024, represents an important moment in the struggle for justice and accountability. As International Human Rights Accompaniers, the delegation will also document their experiences and engage with other human rights defenders, community and Human Rights organizations in Guatemala.

This project reflects the beautiful, diverse and complex identities of its members, who come from various backgrounds, including Mayan, Mestizo, Latine, Queer, and multiracial communities. The range of identities fosters a deep and nuanced understanding of the cultural and historical contexts in which they operate. This ongoing reflection process acknowledges the structures of oppression and white supremacy that people exist within, while consciously striving to dismantle them. The delegation members are Evelyn Zepeda, Kiara Rivera, David Hollinger, Chris Guzaro, Josue Sican and Jhonathan Gómez

In collaboration with CRLN, the project partners in Guatemala are the Network in Solidarity with the People of Guatemala (NISGUA) and Asociación para la Justicia y la Reconciliación (AJR). This collaboration is made possible through the efforts of our sister organization NISGUA and the tireless work of the AJR, who have tirelessly worked to bring to justice those who committed Crimes Against Humanity and Genocide.

Before we depart for Guatemala, the project needs your help to raise funds to cover travel, accommodations, and other necessary expenses. The delegation members are starting their grassroots fundraising efforts for this project, and your financial support is crucial to ensure the success of this important work.

Read the AJR’s February 2024 case report below or click here.

Please consider donating to support the delegation as we stand in solidarity with the Maya Ixil community and advocate for justice and accountability.

Click here to donate through Venmo.

En resistencia y solidaridad permanente

Jhonathan F. Gómez

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Photos by Jhonathan F. Gómez

Friends of CRLN,

We extend our heartfelt thanks to everyone who attended the action on Friday, May 31, at the Consulate. Your participation in this action and your support of the statement echoed the critical demands of human rights organizations in El Salvador. Civil society and human rights advocates have repeatedly highlighted the authoritarian and repressive nature of President Nayib Bukele’s government.

Our action was part of a coordinated effort involving groups and organizations from various cities across the United States and around the world. We were very glad to have partner and supported the diaspora community of El Salvador in Chicago, Alma de Izote collective, Cipotex de Chicago collective and other groups and organizations. We also thank our sister organizations in St. Louis, Missouri, Denver, Colorado, and Cleveland, Ohio who supported the action from their communities.

These demonstrations at embassies and consulates aimed to denounce the unconstitutional and illegitimate re-election of President Nayib Bukele in El Salvador. Your involvement helped amplify this message on a global scale.

People around the world have called for an end to human rights abuses and the restoration of democracy in El Salvador, underscoring the international concern for the country’s deteriorating political situation. This widespread support highlights the critical need for global solidarity in addressing these urgent issues. Please see the updated statement document below or CLICK HERE.

We stand resolutely with the people of El Salvador who REJECT AND REFUSE TO RECOGNIZE the Bukele regime. Together, we will continue to fight for justice, democracy, and human rights.

En resistencia y solidaridad permanente

Jhonathan F. Gómez

To see more photos CLICK HERE.

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Dear CRN friends,

Once again, we are asking you to stand in solidarity with the people of El Salvador.

WHEN: Friday, May 31, 11am
WHERE: Consulate General of El Salvador in Chicago, 8605 W Bryn Mawr Ave STE310, Chicago, IL 60631

On June 1, the people of El Salvador will be subjected to an illegitimate regime led by President-elect Nayib Bukele, who intend to entrench themselves indefinitely as part of the oligarchy. The recent elections were unconstitutional and fraudulent, giving rise to an imposed, illegal, and illegitimate government. We urge you to speak up and stand with the people of El Salvador who REJECT AND REFUSE TO RECOGNIZE this new government.

As part of the international Human Rights community we have repeatedly expressed concerns about the authoritarian and repressive nature of Bukele’s government, which has become particularly urgent following his election into office through an unconstitutional election process.

Nayib Bukele and his legislative majority have undermined democratic checks and balances by allowing Bukele’s re-election against constitutional prohibitions, removing independent judicial figures, and weakening anti-corruption measures. This has raised significant concerns about the state of democracy in El Salvador.

This reality disproportionately impacts impoverished and marginalized communities hardest through repression and criminalization in the form of mass disappearances under the guise of a “state of emergency;” targeted political persecution; ruthless evictions and land dispossession; severe disinvestment in the education and agricultural sectors; relentless harassment of health care workers; massive, unlawful municipal layoffs; the deliberate defunding of educational institutions, notably the National University of El Salvador (UES);and escalating violence against women and LGBTI+ communities.

The 25-month state of emergency, initially adopted to combat gang violence, has led to widespread human rights abuses, including arbitrary detentions, overcrowded prisons, due process violations, and political prisoners. Over 73,000 people, including children and non-gang-related individuals, have been detained, with reports of harsh prison conditions and numerous deaths in custody.

As CRLN, we join in the efforts of the diaspora community of El Salvador in Chicago, Alma de Izote collective, Cipotex de Chicago collective, and especially the international call of action by the Bloque de Resistencia y Rebeldía Popular.

Therefore, the people of El Salvador in Chicago, along with community and human rights organizations, demand:

• Cease the abuse of the judicial apparatus for persecution against the political opposition and left-wing social and environmental movements.
• The end of the “state of emergency” and the immediate release of all people detained without evidence.
• The immediate release of all political prisoners who have been unjustly detained under Bukele’s regime.

We join the struggle of the people of El Salvador in their effort to reclaim their country and the democracy for which generations of Salvadorans fought and sacrificed their lives.

En resistencia y solidaridad permanente

Jhonathan F. Gómez

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May 23, 2024

President Robert L. Manuel, Executive Vice President Sherri Sidler, Director of Public Safety Mike Dohm, Vice President for Student Affairs Eugene L. Zdziarski, DePaul University Administration,

We write on behalf of the Chicago Religious Leadership Network on Latin America (CRLN), an organization dedicated to Immigrant Rights and Latin American Human Rights, committed to dismantling structures of oppression and violence both domestically and internationally. Our mission compels us to challenge militaristic agendas, capitalism, imperialism, and white supremacy, standing in solidarity with marginalized communities in Latin America and the Immigrant Justice community in Chicago and across the United States.

CRLN has a decades-long history of collaboration with DePaul University, recognizing the Vincentian commitment to respecting human rights. As long-time partners in student education, we are deeply troubled by the University’s violent eviction of the peaceful student encampment on May 16, 2024. The students’ desire for dialogue, activism, and dissent should never be met with violence. The disproportionate nature of these actions not only undermines the principles of academic freedom and free expression but also contradicts the University’s professed commitment to social justice and human rights.

We unapologetically stand with the students and find it imperative to express that the violent acts of May 16 should never have happened. DePaul University’s decision to send riot police against its own students is an unspeakable offense against freedom of expression and the right to dissent. These actions have inflicted trauma on students, university staff, faculty, and the community, which the University must acknowledge and repair.

In 2023, CRLN was awarded the HumanitiesX fellowship, an honor we greatly appreciate. In collaboration with DePaul faculty, we developed a course for the 2024 academic year, where students connected historical events of the past to current movements and injustices impacting Central America, specifically in Guatemala, El Salvador, and Honduras. Students interrogated the Western idea of democracy within the context of neoliberalism, highlighting how U.S. governments fund wars while promoting an imperialist version of democracy. The student encampment and activism in support of the people of Palestine embodied the challenge set out by HumanitiesX. Students are now critically examining how democracy functions in the United States amid rising global fascism and have experienced firsthand how their rights have been limited for holding dissenting opinions. This is not merely historical analysis; it is a lived experience of Democracy and Rights today.

On May 16, at 5:30 AM, riot police from the Chicago Police Department, following a complaint signed by DePaul President Rob Manuel against its own student body, violently raided, and dismantled the student solidarity encampment for Palestine. CPD officers tore through the encampment, throwing students’ personal belongings into garbage trucks paid for by the administration, violently arresting at least two students, pulling off the hijab of one, and injuring others. CPD prevented students from retrieving their belongings. The raid occurred just hours after Nakba Day commemorations. It is now clear that DePaul University’s administrators chose to call the Chicago Police Department on the student protest encampment following President Rob Manuel’s decision to cease negotiations with students.

Israel’s bombardment of Gaza began on October 7, 2023. Over 40,000 Palestinian civilians have been killed, including the destruction of hospitals, schools, and universities. The DePaul Divestment Coalition, a multiethnic, multifaith group of students, has been calling on DePaul University to divest from the killing of Palestinian civilians. The DePaul student encampment on April 30th was the longest-standing encampment in the country. This space cultivated political education sessions, dancing, singing, shared meals, community building, praying, discussions, debates, and unity until it was violently destroyed.

We are grateful and commend the courageous students who built the peaceful encampment as a protest against the genocide being committed with U.S. tax dollars against the people of Palestine. Their commitment to transparency and their advocacy for divestment from companies and institutions complicit in the Israeli occupation and apartheid regime is a lesson to us all. The students are on the right side of history, and we must listen to their call.

We echo the demands of the DePaul Divestment Coalition, supported by thousands of students, alumni, faculty, staff, and community members, which is committed to ensuring that DePaul University divests from entities involved in harm and violence abroad, and instead invests in the community.

In light of these urgent concerns, we urge the DePaul University administration to take immediate action by engaging in meaningful dialogue with students, disclosing its investment portfolio, and committing to divestment from complicit entities. It is imperative that the University uphold its principles of academic freedom, social justice, and human rights by respecting the rights of students to peacefully advocate for justice and equality. Dissent should not be punished. We call upon the administration to heed the demands of the students and take concrete steps towards creating a campus environment that fosters inclusivity, transparency, and a genuine engagement with social justice.

Silence is complicity. Silence will not absolve us.


The Chicago Religious Leadership Network on Latin America                      

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May 9, 2024

President Paul Alivisatos, Dean Michelle Rasmussen, Vice President Erin Lane, University of Chicago Administration,

We write on behalf of the Chicago Religious Leadership Network on Latin America (CRLN), an Immigrant Rights and Latin America Human Rights organization committed to dismantling structures of oppression and violence, both domestically and abroad. Our mission drives us to challenge imperialistic, capitalist, and militaristic agendas, and to stand in solidarity with marginalized communities in Latin America as well as with the Immigrant community in the United States.

CRLN has a long history of collaboration with institutions like the University of Chicago in educating students and the public on the importance of respecting human rights. As neighbors in the Hyde Park neighborhood, we are deeply troubled by the University’s violent response to student activism and dissent. This disproportionate reaction not only undermines the principles of academic freedom and free expression but also contradicts the University’s professed commitment to social justice and human rights.

As an institution of higher learning, the University of Chicago bears a profound responsibility to safeguard the rights and freedoms of its diverse community, including students, staff, and faculty. Central to these rights is the freedom to express dissenting views without fear of reprisal or suppression.

We adamantly reject any attempts to vilify or stifle peaceful expressions of political dissent, particularly regarding the urgent issue of the Genocide against the people of Palestine. The University must recognize that criticism of oppressive state policies, such as those perpetuated by the Israeli government, is not only legitimate but also essential to fostering meaningful discourse and social progress.

Recent efforts to suppress student activism, both in Chicago and at other academic institutions across the country, only serve to exacerbate tensions and undermine the principles of academic freedom and democratic governance. We implore the University of Chicago to refrain from resorting to heavy-handed tactics such as deploying law enforcement to intimidate peaceful protests, which only escalate conflicts and endanger the safety of our community.

We unequivocally condemn the violent destruction of the peaceful student encampment in solidarity with the people of Palestine. Such actions not only infringe upon the fundamental rights of students to engage in peaceful protest but also perpetuate a culture of repression, silence and intimidation on campus. It is imperative that the University administration recognizes the importance of respecting the rights of students to express solidarity with marginalized communities without fear of reprisal or violence.

Moreover, we echo the demands put forth by students advocating for divestment from companies and institutions complicit in the Israeli occupation and apartheid regime. It is unconscionable for the University to continue profiting from investments in weapons manufacturers that fuel violence and human rights abuses against the Palestinian people. We call upon the University to immediately divest from such entities and to disclose its investment portfolio in the interest of transparency and accountability.

Furthermore, we stand in solidarity with the students who have bravely and peacefully occupied space in the form of an encampment to protest against injustice. Their steadfast commitment to solidarity with the people of Palestine must be respected, not met with intimidation or violence. We condemn any actions taken by the University to suppress dissent and join in the call for meaningful dialogue and engagement with the students.

In light of these concerns, we urge the University of Chicago administration to take immediate action by engaging in meaningful dialogue with students, disclosing its investment portfolio, and committing to divestment from complicit entities. It is imperative that the University uphold its principles of academic freedom, social justice, and human rights by respecting the rights of students to peacefully advocate for justice and equality. We call upon the administration to heed the demands of the students and take concrete steps towards creating a campus environment that fosters inclusivity, transparency, and genuine engagement with social justice issues.


The Chicago Religious Leadership Network on Latin America

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Conversation with Human Rights
Defender from Honduras,
Nelly del Cid

CRN friends,

We are glad to extend an invitation for you to join us for a compelling conversation with Nelly del Cid, a distinguished Human Rights Defender from Honduras. The event will take place on Thursday, May 2, at 6 pm at Inga Bookstore in Pilsen.

Nelly del Cid, also known as Carmen Manuela Del Cid Mata, is an admired figure in the feminist movement in Honduras. Her unwavering dedication to defending the rights of women has earned her recognition as the “Butterfly of the Year” by women’s organizations in Honduras in 2014.

As a Mercy lay associate and the coordinator of the Mercy’s Dream Weavers ministry in San Pedro Sula, Honduras, Nelly provides crucial emotional and spiritual support to women human rights defenders across the country. Her leadership extends to the Sisters of Mercy of the Americas Institute’s International Justice Team.

Nelly is a founding member of the Women’s Forum for Life, a network of 16 women’s organizations, including the Sisters of Mercy. Through this network, she has been instrumental in bringing attention to extreme violence against women and femicide.

In addition to her advocacy work, Nelly is trained as a Nonviolence Promoter through the Quakers’ Alternatives to Violence program. She has conducted nonviolence trainings in Honduran prisons and communities grappling with high levels of violence.

We are honored to partner with the Sisters of Mercy, Mercy Chicago Justice Committee and La Voz de los de Abajo for this event. It promises to be an enlightening discussion covering topics such as women’s rights, nonviolence, migration, and the challenges facing the people of Honduras.

We hope you will join us for what is sure to be an inspiring evening. Your presence and support are invaluable as we come together to learn from Nelly del Cid’s experiences and insights.

En resistencia y solidaridad permanente

Jhonathan F. Gómez

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(texto en el lenguage español, abajo del texto en inglés)

Loyet Ricardo García Broche

Loyet was born in the town of Fomento, a municipality located in the province of Sancti Spíritus, in the heart of Cuba. His childhood was spent in a small rural village, where he spent most of his life. From a young age, Loyet became interested in social issues and the defense of human rights, a passion that would accompany him throughout his life.

His journey at the Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. Memorial Center in Havana began many years ago when he joined the Faith for Cuba Ecumenical Network. However, it was in 2016 when he decided to move to the capital to work as a theologian at the Center. In 2022, he was elected as a member of the Collegiate Coordination, a position he has held with commitment and dedication to this day.

The defense of human rights is not just a job for Loyet; it is a conviction rooted in his personal values and faith. For him, the struggle for a fairer and more equitable world is a moral responsibility inspired by the example of Jesus and the values of the Kingdom. Despite challenges such as religious fundamentalism and precarity in the Cuban context, Loyet approaches his work with determination and hope.

To disconnect from work and recharge, Loyet enjoys activities such as cooking, dancing, playing the guitar, and spending time with friends and family. Contact with loved ones, especially his parents, is a source of happiness and motivation to continue his fight for human rights and social justice in Cuba.


Loyet Ricardo García Broche

Loyet nació en el pueblo de Fomento, un municipio ubicado en la provincia de Sancti Spíritus, en el corazón de Cuba. Su infancia transcurrió en un pequeño pueblo rural, donde pasó la mayor parte de su vida. Desde muy joven, Loyet se interesó por las cuestiones sociales y la defensa de los derechos humanos, una pasión que lo acompañaría a lo largo de su vida.

Su trayectoria en el Centro Memorial Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. en La Habana comenzó hace muchos años, cuando se unió a la Red Ecuménica Fe por Cuba. Sin embargo, fue en 2016 cuando decidió trasladarse a la capital para trabajar como teólogo en el Centro. En 2022, fue elegido como miembro de la Coordinación Colegiada, una posición que desempeña con compromiso y dedicación hasta el día de hoy.

La defensa de los derechos humanos no es solo un trabajo para Loyet, es una convicción arraigada en sus valores personales y en su fe. Para él, la lucha por un mundo más justo y equitativo es una responsabilidad moral que encuentra inspiración en el ejemplo de Jesús y los valores del Reino. A pesar de los desafíos, como el fundamentalismo religioso y la precariedad en el contexto cubano, Loyet aborda su labor con determinación y esperanza.

Para desconectar del trabajo y recargar energías, Loyet disfruta de actividades como cocinar, bailar, tocar la guitarra y pasar tiempo con amigos y familiares. El contacto con sus seres queridos, especialmente con sus padres, es una fuente de felicidad y motivación para seguir adelante en su lucha por los derechos humanos y la justicia social en Cuba.

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We are very happy to share that CRLN was chosen as one of three recipients of the esteemed HumanitiesX fellowship at DePaul University. After months of work, on April 1, the CRLN Team launched a course titled ¨Historical Memory Project: Ni Olvido, Ni Perdón¨ based on the HumanitiesX theme of democracy and rights, which is being offered to DePaul students this Spring Quarter, 2024.

What is HumanitiesX you might ask? HumanitiesX is an innovative program that redefines the boundaries of traditional education by fostering interdisciplinary collaboration, community engagement, and experiential learning in the humanities. It offers year-long fellowships to teams comprised of faculty members, community partners, and students from DePaul University’s College of Liberal Arts and Social Sciences. You can read more at DePaul’s website here.

The CRLN Team is Susana Martínez, Associate Professor in Modern Languages and Peace, Justice, & Conflict Studies, and Lydia Saravia, Professional Lecturer in Writing, Rhetoric, & Discourse, Angelina Álvarez, Undergraduate Student of Peace, Justice, and Conflict Studies, Safiyah Simpkins Undergraduate Student of Political Science, and Jhonathan F. Gomez: co-director of CRLN.

In collaboration with CRLN, students participating in the course will delve into the complex history of Central America, examining the enduring legacies of past struggles and their implications for contemporary social movements. Students will have the opportunity to create public, political art and writing that amplifies marginalized voices and challenges dominant narratives.

Students will consider the connection between historical events, beginning in the 1960s, and current movements and injustices impacting Central America—specifically, in Guatemala, Honduras, and El Salvador. Students will examine the ways in which organized communities in Central America have actively worked with human rights groups in the U.S. Through cultural, historical, and rhetorical frameworks, students will interrogate the Western idea of Democracy within the context of neoliberalism. Further, by directly working with CRLN, talking to local political artists, and visiting sites around the city, students will examine how local activists and artists participate in political movements and preserve historic memory.

The collaboration between DePaul University and CRLN exemplifies the transformative potential of community-engaged scholarship. By bridging academic expertise with grassroots activism, the ¨Historical Memory Project: Ni Olvido, Ni Perdón¨ seeks to foster meaningful dialogue, inspire action, and honor the resilience of communities who have fought for justice. As CRLN embarks on this exciting journey as a HumanitiesX fellow, we invite you to join us in future events as we continue to interrogate democracy, foreign policy, neoliberalism and explore what resistance communities in Central America are doing to advance human rights and promote historical consciousness. Stay tuned for updates on the progress of the Historical Memory Project and opportunities to engage with this vital work.

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CRLN Open House
Saturday, April 13, from 3:00 to 6:00pm
CRLN Office at University Church
5655 S University Ave, Chicago, IL 60637

If you haven’t already seen our postcard reminder to RSVP, please take a moment to confirm your attendance using the link provided here: [Insert RSVP Link]. We’re thoroughly preparing for our upcoming Open House, eager to showcase our recent accomplishments and projects and provide insights into our future work.

We are very happy to announce that Reverend Izzet Samá Hernández and Loyet García Broche, co-directors of the Centro Memorial Martin Luther King Jr. (CMMLK) in La Habana, Cuba, will be joining us as special guests. From April 13th to April 19th, CRLN will host them for a series of events centered around political education, liberatory theology, and liberatory education. CMMLK graciously hosted CRLN during our delegation to Cuba in January of this year. CMMLK’s unique blend of secular and religious elements holds immense significance within Cuba, and we are honored to count them among our international partners at CRLN. We will soon send more details on the events they’ll be participating in during their visit.

At the Open House, you’ll have the opportunity to engage with CRLN staff, members of the board of directors and learn more about our recent delegations to Guatemala and Cuba. We will also introduce our unique and innovative new collaborationwith DePaul University as recipients of the HumanitiesX Fellowship, along with our political education through the arts Mural Project collaboration with Red COMAL in Honduras. Additionally, we’ll share updates on our work with residents at the Amate House migrant shelter. This interactive afternoon promises to provide valuable insights into our work, allowing you to connect with our team, meet collaborators, and gain a deeper understanding of our initiatives.

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