Lights for Liberty vigil on Milford Green Friday

Cindy Wolfe Boynton, local organizer of the Lights for Liberty Vigil.

Cindy Wolfe Boynton, local organizer of the Lights for Liberty Vigil.

Contributed /

Milford residents will join others across the state and country holding a Lights for Liberty vigil Friday, July 12, in recognition of conditions refugees face at the southern border and in U.S. detention centers.

The vigil will take place on the Milford Green starting at 7 p.m. at the gazebo. It will include live music and a lineup of community leaders, activists, immigrants and other speakers.

At 9 p.m., participants will light LED candles and stand in silent solidarity, said Milford organizer Cindy Wolfe Boynton.

Speakers will include state Sen. James Maroney, Milford Poet Laureate Mick Theebs, IRIS (Integrated Refugee & Immigrant Services) Employment & Education Services Director Will Kneerim, and the Rev. Kristina Hansen of Mary Taylor Memorial United Methodist Church.

Mary Taylor was recently burglarized by a Tennessee man who opposed how publicly and openly it and Hansen welcome members of the LGBT community. Police charged the man with a hate crime.

“There’s no place in Milford for hate, and there’s no place in the United States for hate or the kinds of human rights abuses being perpetrated by our president at detention camps on the southern border,” Boynton said. “The Lights for Liberty vigils happening throughout the nation give us, the people, the chance to show the White House and the world that these atrocities do not represent who we are, and that the American people will not tolerate them any longer. If Milford truly is the small city with a big heart, our Green will be overflowing on Friday.”

Boynton asks those attending the vigil to bring their own LED candles, and to consider bringing items needed by area refugee families, including:

New package of diapers for the United Way of Milford's Diaper Bank. Sizes 4, 5 and 6 are especially needed.

Toiletries like shaving cream, shampoo, soap, etc. to be given to IRIS, a federally recognized refugee resettlement agency located in New Haven.

Milford Lights for Liberty co-sponsors include Milford Speaks Out, West Haven Progressive Action Network, Action Together Connecticut, NO MOSS (NO MOre Staying Silent)-SWCT/Indivisible, the Milford Democratic Town Committee and the Orange Democratic Town Committee.

National Lights for Liberty sponsors include SEIU, American Federation of Teachers, American Farm Workers, Dolores Huerta Foundation, New Sanctuary Coalition, Fair Immigration Reform Movement, Border Network for Human Rights, Witness Homestead, numerous frontline immigration advocacy organizations, a multitude of faith-based organizations, the Women’s March and Indivisible.

For more information, contact Boynton at or 203-214-7554, or visit