Immigration stories to be archived at Birmingham Civil Rights Institute

The Alabama Immigrant Stories project will have stories placed at the Birmingham Civil Rights Institute. (

In a year in which the city of Birmingham remembers the stories of the struggle for Civil Rights, a new group emerges ready to tell its stories of trying to keep families together. The two{} share a common place to let those stories be heard.

This venture is{} called the Alabama Immigrant Stories project. The stories to be recorded will be placed at the Birmingham Civil Rights Institution. The project's goal is to highlight the need for federal immigration reform. Without it, these stories tell of families being torn apart.

"One of the things that we really focus on is ending deportations and keeping the families together," said Melissa Murrell with the Alabama Coalition for Immigration Justice to Launch.

Murrell joined five other members at the Birmingham Civil Rights Institute to introduce the project to the public. She says the organization already has collected some twenty stories from immigrants and their families, both documented and undocumented.

"To kind of put a face on the issue to help people understand that every time we talk about immigration reform we're talking about real people," she said.

Over the next several months the coalition will compile more stories. Those stories will then be archived at the BCRI.

Murrell says it will be an honor to have the public read these stories alongside those from the civil rights movement.

"The ultimate goal of the project is to give people an idea of what individuals and families are going through personally as a result of a broken immigration and to help people understand why we need immigration reform," said Murrell.

The project is part of a national project called Keeping Families Together project.