What We Do

The Problem:

Due to historical trauma, poverty, structural racism, and violence, Southeast Asians often struggle to access the economic, mental health, and community resources needed to thrive in their neighborhoods.

This problem is amplified for families impacted by detention and deportation, and those who are returning home to their loved ones after their release from incarceration.

How We’re Tackling It:


We change systems to prevent and end deportation at the local, state, and national levels

1. Pass anti-deportation policy

We work in alignment with local, state, and national coalitions such as the Decriminalizing Communities Coalition (DCC), Detention Watch Network (DWN), Southeast Asian Freedom Network (SEAFN), and Southeast Asian Deportation Defense Network (SEADDN) on issue-based campaigns related to anti-deportation policy, such as, but not limited to:

*Ending county cooperation with ICE

*Expanding access to post-conviction relief for wrongly obtained convictions

*Passing national-level legislation for the U.S. to take responsibility for harms caused to Southeast Asia during the wars

2. Advocate for universal representation

People in immigration proceedings are not offered government-funded legal counsel, such as public defenders in criminal cases. They often have to navigate the legal system alone, while also struggling with language barriers. When unrepresented, most impacted community members are at high risk of being deported. As part of the Vera – SAFE Initiative, MN8 is launching a media campaign to push lawmakers to support government-funded legal counsel for every person facing threats of deportation.

Basic Needs

We equip Southeast Asians with different resources to help them thrive

1. Khmer Community Needs Assessment

In partnership with Wilder Research, we will launch a Khmer Community Needs Assessment to evaluate the resources most needed by Southeast Asian communities from housing support and employment support to resources for those facing violence. By partnering with local direct service providers, we will make referrals for our community members seeking help and provide language support if needed.

2. Mental Health Support

Community members impacted by deportation are offered referrals to free or low-cost therapy options and other mental health resources such as support groups. We also facilitate transformative justice circles to address accountability and harm done in the community.

3. Financial Assistance and Culturally-Specific Food

MN8 regularly checks in with Khmer community members to provide financial assistance and culturally-specific food. Especially for Khmer community members in the Rochester area, culturally-specific food options are limited on food shelves.

What we’ve done

MN8 testifies at the MN Capitol on April 5th, 2022

Earlier this month, our Organizing Director Rebecca testified 🗣📣at the House Judiciary Finance and Civil Law Committee to #advocate for the inclusion of a provision to expand #PostConvictionRelief to individuals facing deportation within the judiciary #omnibus bill📜


Any relevant events will be updated here.