With A Michigan City Fighting Back, DHS Pushes A Controversial Deportation Forward

Lourdes Salazar-Bautista of Ann Arbor speaks at a press conference on ICE policies in Michigan on July 8, 2017. Photo: Hunter Dyke/The Ann Arbor News

By Maryam Saleh for The Intercept – IN THE FACE of intense community opposition, immigration officials are vowing to push ahead with plans to deport a 20-year Ann Arbor, Michigan, resident. Immigration and Customs Enforcement has ordered Lourdes Salazar-Bautista, 49, to leave the country by August 2. The local community and elected officials have rallied in support of the mother of three, but ICE spokesperson Khaalid Walls told The Intercept that the agency will not back down. “In a current exercise of discretion, the agency has allowed her to remain free from custody while timely finalizing her departure plans,” Walls wrote in a statement. “ICE focuses its enforcement resources on individuals who pose a threat to national security, public safety, and border security. However, as Secretary Kelly has made clear, ICE will not exempt classes or categories of removable aliens from potential enforcement. All of those in violation of the immigration laws may be subject to immigration arrest, detention, and, if found removable by final order, removal from the United States.” The Mexican native says she’s not done fighting. “I’m not a threat to this country,” said Salazar-Bautista, choking back tears during a vigil at St. Mary Student Parish in Ann Arbor on Tuesday evening, broadcast on Facebook live.

IWW Miners Of Jerome & Bisbee Loaded Into Cattle Cars & Deported From State Of Arizona

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By Janet Raye for We Never Forget – The above photograph shows more than 1000 working class men, mostly members of the Metal Mine Workers Industrial Union of the Industrial Workers of the World, being loaded into cattle cars in Bisbee, Arizona, July 12th, for the purpose of being deported from the state of Arizona. The men were force to stand in manure and left without food and water for hours until they were hauled across the state line and into New Mexico. More than 1000 men were left stranded in the desert near Hermanas, New Mexico. The sixty-seven men deported from Jerome were taken across the state line and left at Needles, California.

60 Days Of Deportations And Detainments Under Trump

Fatima Avelica, 13, daughter of Romulo Avelica-Gonzalez, attends a rally for his release outside Immigration and Customs Enforcement offices March 13, 2017, in Los Angeles. Her father is mentioned in the Slate piece. 
Photo: David McNew/Getty Images)

By Yessenia Funes for Color Lines – Tactics once reserved for violent criminals are now targeting undocumented youth and parents. In a cover story published today (June 16), Slate lays out 60 scenes from life as an undocumented immigrant in President Donald Trump’s America, pulled from the Columbia Journalism School’s Global Migration Project. Slate starts with February 20, the day the Department of Homeland Security (DHS) issued two memos on immigration enforcement. The following day, 25-year-old Edwin Romero, an undocumented youth who would have qualified for citizenship under the proposed (and failed) DREAM Act, was arrested for a traffic violation but, ultimately held overnight in jail on an “immigration hold.” Then, in March, there was a teacher in Honolulu who wrote a staff-wide email that he wouldn’t teach any undocumented student. The examples go on and on—up until April 20, exactly 60 days after the DHS memos. As Slate points out, fewer than 9 percent of Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) detainees have been connected to violent crime.

Immigration Court Spotlights The ‘Legal Hell’ Of The U.S. Deportation System

Officers from the Department of Homeland Security stand guard at a federal immigration court in Los Angeles in March as people outside protest the arrest and ordered deportation of Romulo Avelica-Gonzalez, an immigrant detained while dropping his daughter off at school. (Michael Balsamo / AP)

By Bill Boyarsky for Truth Dig – I spent four days in immigration court recently as I began reporting on how President Trump’s nativist immigration policy, favoring native-born Americans, is reaching down to the street level. Contempt for immigrants was at the heart of his presidential campaign, and it remains a cornerstone of his domestic policy, whether the immigrants are from Muslim countries or are from Mexico and Central America. The United States is a nation of immigrants, founded and shaped by them, an idea so ingrained in the national psyche that it is almost a cliche. So is opposition to them, from the 19th century and the Know Nothing Party to Donald Trump. But the immigrants—Germans, Asians, Irish, Italians, Jews and many others—survived and prospered. “The migration of foreign peoples to the United States has been one of the most significant transformation processes in American history,” Erika Lee writes in her review of Roger Daniels’ book “Guarding the Golden Door.” Personally, I root for the immigrants. I see them as America’s future, a feeling reinforced most recently while I watched journalism students, children or grandchildren of immigrants, from Roosevelt High School in Los Angeles’ heavily Latino Boyle Heights. They were learning the best way of using their mobile phones to cover their community and transmit the news stories they dig up.

Women In California’s Largest Immigrant Prison Hold Hunger Strike

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By Victoria Law for Waging Nonviolence – On June 14, 33 women who have been detained and incarcerated by ICE in California’s Adelanto Detention Facility launched a hunger strike. They were protesting the poor conditions at the facility as well as the policies that were keeping them away from their children and loved ones. The Adelanto Detention Facility, with a capacity of 1,940, is the largest private immigration detention facility in the United States. Run by the GEO Group, ICE pays $111 per person per day for the first 975 detainees, thus guaranteeing GEO a minimum of $40 million each year. If more than 975 people are detained inside Adelanto, the daily rate drops to less than $50 per day. Immigrant rights organizations, such as Community Initiatives for Visiting Immigrants in Confinement, or CIVIC, and Detention Watch Network, have sharply criticized Adelanto for its widespread and systemic abuses towards immigrants in custody. Since March 2017, three people have died at Adelanto. Others have reported medical neglect and, on at least one occasion, being punished for seeking medical care. Norma Gutierrez, one of the women on hunger strike has suffered multiple strokes during her incarceration at Adelanto. Instead of receiving proper medical care, she was placed in solitary confinement.

Judge Halts Deportation Of More Than 1,000 Iraqi Nationals From US

A protester demonstrates against the arrest of dozens of Iraqi Christians in south-eastern Michigan by US immigration officials. Photograph: Todd McInturf/AP

By Amanda Holpuch for The Guardian – More than 1,400 Iraqi nationals in the US have been protected from deportation for the next two weeks, because of an order issued late on Monday by a federal district judge. Judge Mark Goldsmith temporarily halted deportations while he considers a class-action lawsuit representing 114 Iraqis who were arrested in the Detroit area earlier this month. Attorneys say the defendants, most of whom are members of the Chaldean minority, could face persecution or death if returned to their country of birth. Islamic State and other jihadist groups have targeted Christians, including Chaldeans, and Shia Muslims in Iraq. Goldsmith said on Monday that given evidence provided about the “extraordinarily grave consequences” detainees could face if returned to Iraq, he would extend an existing halt on deportations to all 1,444 Iraqi nationals who are subject to orders of removal. “Such harm far outweighs any interest the government may have in proceeding with the removals immediately,” Goldsmith said. US Immigration and Customs Enforcement (Ice) conducted a series of raids on Iraqi communities following negotiations between the US and Iraq, which resulted in Iraq agreeing, for the first time in several years, to provide travel documents to people the US attempted to deport.

‘Reign Of Terror’: ICE Chief Says Immigrants Should Be Looking Over Their Shoulders

"More evidence the administration is methodically building a deportation force," wrote Ali Noorani, an immigrant rights advocate. (Photo: Susan Walsh/AP)

By Jake Johnson for Common Dreams – The remarks came during a House Appropriations Committee hearing, in which Homan asked for more than a billion dollars to expand ICE’s capacity to detain and deport undocumented immigrants. Immigration arrests are “already up sharply since President Trump took office,” the Washington Post noted, and they “could rise dramatically next year” if Homan’s requests are fulfilled. “Part of that increase,” added Buzzfeed’s Salvador Hernandez, “is due…to what many have seen as a shift in the agency to not just focus on immigrants with violent criminal histories, but minor crimes as well. Attorneys have also pointed to undocumented immigrants who have been detained without any criminal history, or minor convictions.” Last week, Reuters reported that not only is the Trump administration rounding up undocumented immigrants at a staggering clip, it is also “reopen[ing] the cases of hundreds of illegal immigrants who…had been given a reprieve from deportation” by the Obama administration.

Fire And ICE: The Return Of Workplace Immigration Raids

Erik McGregor/Sipa via AP Images

By David Bacon for The American Prospect – Capital & Main is an award-winning publication that reports from California on economic, political, and social issues. The American Prospect is co-publishing this piece. At the end of February immigration agents descended on a handful of Japanese and Chinese restaurants in the suburbs of Jackson, Mississippi, and in nearby Meridian. Fifty-five immigrant cooks, dishwashers, servers and bussers were loaded into vans and taken to a detention center about 160 miles away in Jena, Louisiana. Their arrests and subsequent treatment did more than provoke outrage among Jackson’s immigrant rights activists. Labor advocates in California also took note of the incident, fearing that it marked the beginning of a new wave of immigrant raids and enforcement actions in workplaces. In response, California legislators have written a bill providing legal protections for workers, to keep the Mississippi experience from being duplicated in the Golden State. Once the Mississippi restaurant workers had been arrested, they essentially fell off the radar screen for several days. Jackson lawyer Jeremy Litton, who represented three Guatemalan workers picked up in the raid, could not get the government to schedule hearing dates for them.

Making Sense Of The Deportation Debate

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By Aviva Chomsky for Tom Dispatch – Ever since he rode a Trump Tower escalator into the presidential race in June 2015 and swore to build his “great wall” and stop Mexican “rapists” from entering the country, undocumented immigrants have been the focus of Donald Trump’s ire. Now that he’s in the Oval Office, the news has been grim. A drumbeat of frightening headlines and panicked social media posts have highlighted his incendiary language, his plans and executive orders when it comes to immigrants, and the early acts of the Border Patrol and U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement agents when it comes to round-ups and deportations. The temperature has soared on the deportation debate, so if you think we’re in a completely unprecedented moment when it comes to immigration and immigrants, you’re in good company. Trump has repeatedly claimed that immigrants, especially undocumented ones, are flooding the United States, causing crime waves, and depleting social service budgets. Never mind that the number of such immigrants has been in steady decline since 2008, that immigrant crime rates are lower than citizen crime rates…

Not Only Latinos, African Blacks Facing Mass Deportation

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By David Love for Atlanta Black Star – Although often not covered in the media, the African immigrant community is facing mass deportations in the era of Donald Trump. While the immigration debate in the U.S. is often framed in terms of undocumented immigrants from Mexico and Central America on the one hand and the infamous Muslim travel ban on the other, the issue is more complicated. As the U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) agency conducts its sweeps on immigrant communities, African people are among those who are being detained and deported. While deportations were in no short supply under the Obama administration, these deportations are expected to soar under Trump, whose immigration ban on six Muslim nations includes three African nations — Libya, Somalia and Sudan…

Children As Young As 3 Detained 500 Days And Counting In Disgraceful Immigrant Prisons

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By Sarah Lazare for AlterNet – For more than 600 days and two Christmas holidays, Marlene and her seven-year-old son Antonio have languished in indefinite detention at Pennsylvania’s “Berks Family Residential Center,” a glorified term for an immigrant prison. Her child has been granted Special Immigrant Juvenile Status (SIJS), which the U.S. government says is supposed to “help foreign children in the United States who have been abused, abandoned, or neglected.” But instead of sanctuary, or even a fair hearing, Marlene and her son face open-ended incarceration and “expedited removal” orders, compounding the trauma they endured when they were forced to flee their home in El Salvador under threat of gang violence.

London NGOs Help Authorities Detain, Deport Homeless Migrants

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By Staff of Tele Sur – The war on the homeless has turned into a war on migrants and non-profits are readily offering their services. London nonprofits are collaborating with immigration authorities that collect intelligence and conduct raids to detain and deport hundreds of homeless people, and are even lobbying for harsher policies, according to a report published Tuesday. At least three organizations with the shared goal of ending homelessness and connecting the vulnerable to appropriate resources — St. Mungo’s, Thames Reach, and Change, Grow, Live — regularly conduct joint operations with the Home Office “Immigration Compliance and Enforcement” and “through a creeping process of changes they are being turned into informers,” Corporate Watch found in its investigation.

Three Lessons From Fighting Obama Raids To Organize Under Trump Regime

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By Jacinta Gonzalez for Mijente – As many community members start to plan out emergency response teams and community defense, there is a need to think out short and long term organizing strategies that we can use so that we do not fall into patterns of solely doing individual deportation cases, press and mobilizing work, but are also thinking about long-term power building. While enforcement under the new regime represents an expansion and escalation, it is built upon past practices that can provide us with key lessons now. In 2013, the New Orleans community was facing an increasing ICE presence in immigrant neighborhoods including raids

Blocking Deportation With Your Life: Conversation With Arizona Activist

Guadalupe Garcia de Rayos, who was deported, embraces her son, Angel, 16, who met her in Mexico after she was deported, at Hotel Fray Marcos in Nogales, Mexico, February 9, 2017. (Photo: Caitlin O'Hara / The New York Times)

By Sarah Jaffee for Truth Out – Last week, on February 8, Guadalupe Garcia de Rayos went to her yearly check-in with Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) in Phoenix, Arizona, something she has done every year since 2008, when she was arrested in a raid by notorious Sheriff Joe Arpaio and convicted of using a fake Social Security number to work (and pay Social Security taxes that she would never be able to collect). This time, instead of being sent home to her family, she was loaded into a van and deported to Mexico, despite a group of her friends and family and supporters placing their bodies in the way of the van. Her 14-year-old daughter had to pack her things for her; she, along with her brother and father, would be staying behind.

Immigrants Prison Hunger Strike Demand To See Deportation Officer

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By Spencer Woodman for The Verge – Beginning last April, and picking up in the weeks following the November election, dozens of detainees at an Immigration and Customs Enforcement facility in rural Georgia went on hunger strike in protest of their detention. The private prison corporation that runs the facility, CoreCivic — formerly Corrections Corporation of America — responded swiftly to the expanding demonstration: as immigrant detainees refused to eat, CoreCivic staff began immediately locking them in solitary confinement for their participation in the non-violent protest. According to ICE detainment logs obtained by The Verge through a Freedom of Information Act request, more than two dozen detainees were put in solitary confinement for hunger striking — some simply for declaring they would refuse to eat, even if they hadn’t yet skipped a meal. The logs also show that CoreCivic may have attempted to gather information on hunger strike organizers through cultivating detainee informants, who were later locked in solitary confinement themselves for protection.