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The Federal Government Was Sheriff Joe Arpaio’s Partner in Crime

Department of Homeland Security programs like ‘Se Communities’ help drive the Arizona-fication of the country

By CARLOS GARCIA

Carlos Garcia grew up in Arizona and is a leader of Puente Arizona, a human rights organization seeking to improve conditions for migrant families in Maricopa County, Ariz.

 Now that the Department of Justice has closed its investigation into the troubled office of Arizona Sheriff Joe Arpaio, what lessons are there from Maricopa County?

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Immigrant laborers inspire painting, donation from Morristown artist Ron Ritzie to Neighborhood House

Posted by Kevin Coughlin on December 22, 2011 | Source: MorristownGreen.com

They sit with shovels and rakes and spades, waiting.

The faceless day laborers in Ron Ritzie’s painting, Waiting Game, are a face of Morristown that he cannot ignore.

“You see their images all around town, looking for work,” Ron said on Wednesday at the Morristown Neighborhood House, where he donated a signed giclée (digital ink-jet) print of the painting to Pathways to Work.

That program, now in its third year, matches workers with people seeking to hire casual labor.

Immigrant laborers inspire painting, donation from Morristown artist Ron Ritzie to Neighborhood House

'Waiting Game,' by Morristown artist Ron Ritzie. he donated a print of the painting to the Pathways to Work program at the Neighborhood House. Photo by Bill Lescohier

Pathways Manager Rosa Chilquillo said she was “escstatic” about Ron’s gift. “It depicts what Pathways to Work is is,” she said. “We work with anybody who is unemployed, who needs work.”

Immigrant laborers inspire painting, donation from Morristown artist Ron Ritzie to Neighborhood House

Morristown artist Ron Ritzie poses with 'Waiting Game,' his gift to Pathways to Work. Photo by Bill Lescohier

More than 500 members are enrolled, and more than 4000 work days have been brokered so far, said Rosa.

The program is supported by community groups and churches, and is affiliated with the nonprofit Neighborhood House, which has assisted immigrants and minority groups for more than a century.

There was extra joy at the Nabe on Wednesday. After Ron gave his artwork to Pathways, Rosa distributed gift-wrapped warm clothing to day laborers, courtesy of the Morristown Unitarian Fellowship.

Ron, a 1977 graduate of Morristown High School, is working on a series of paintings about immigration.

“It touched me, because everyone is looking for work, to feed their families and start their own small businesses,” he explained.

Rosa Chilquillo and artist Ron Ritzie with his painting, Waiting Game. Photo by Bill Lescohie

Rosa Chilquillo and artist Ron Ritzie with his painting, 'Waiting Game.' Photo by Bill Lescohie

Immigrant laborers inspire painting, donation from Morristown artist Ron Ritzie to Neighborhood House

Day laborers pose with artist Ron Ritzie and Pathways to Work Manager Rosa Chilquillo at the Neighborhood House in Morristown. Ron donated a painting, 'Waiting Game.' Photo by Bill Lescohie

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