Walking for Ded
*FILMMAKER IN ATTENDANCE* Walking For Ded is a meditation on the revival of the sanctuary movement in the United States in response to the anti-immigrant political agenda implemented by the Trump administration. It focuses on the case of Ded Rranxburgaj, an Albanian immigrant who has lived and worked in the U.S. for 17 years after being denied political asylum.
Ded has been in sanctuary with his family at the Central United Methodist Church in Detroit since January 16, 2018. Ded’s wife Flora, who immigrated to the U.S. with him, has multiple sclerosis and cannot be deported for health reasons. Ded is her primary caregiver. The couple has two children, one of whom is a DACA recipient.
In May, members of the congregation led by Rev. Jill Zundel teamed up with other faith communities and Michigan United, a coalition that fights for immigrant rights, to organize a 90-mile pilgrimage to “Keep Families Together” from Detroit to the state capitol in Lansing, Michigan. Walking For Ded follows their efforts to bring attention to Ded’s plight and convince Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) to issue a stay of removal.
One year after the pilgrimage, ICE still considers Ded a fugitive.