Mass Arrests of California Immigrants

ABC7_Grab
Screen grab of headlines from Bay Area ABC 7 News, http://abc7news.com/tag/ice/

I expected to attend a bail hearing today, for an immigrant detained by ICE. Instead, there’s going to be a rally to protest the arrest of 150 immigrants in Northern California since Sunday. I’m horrified by what I understand about yesterday’s Supreme Court decision (still reading up on it). Briefly, from NPR: “The U.S. Supreme Court ruled Tuesday that immigrants, even those with permanent legal status and asylum seekers, do not have the right to periodic bond hearings.” Here’s the email I received about the arrests and today’s protest. I’m headed there shortly.  – Eva

Press release from the Power, Not Panic Emergency Response Committee: Major Protest Planned in SF to Denounce ICE Raids

As lawyers mobilize, civil rights groups condemn raids as retaliation, Demand due process and transparency

SAN FRANCISCO  — This evening (Feb.27), Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) confirmed that it had conducted at least 150 arrests in deportation operations across Northern California over the last several days. Local “rapid response” hotlines documented a pattern of psychological intimidation beginning Sunday. For example, ICE agents congregated at food trucks in Napa and reportedly joked about who would be arrested next. In Atwater, ICE agents conducted several arrests simply by racially profiling people who walked into a convenience store.

Advocates caution that ICE has a long track record of deceiving the public about its arrests and call upon the press to question the agency’s claims. Advocates also encourage community members to Know Their Rights.

A broad array of local organizations, coalitions, and networks, informally known as the “Power, not Panic Emergency Response Committee” has come together to denounce ICE’s operation as a profound abuse of power and to mount an emergency response.

  • Groups across the Bay Area will denounce ICE’s operation at a 12:00 PM rally at ICE’s Northern California headquarters at 630 Sansome St. in San Francisco.

  • Dozens of trained attorneys are on standby to assist those who are affected, and to monitor and document abuses, as well as to advocate for due process.

The arrests come amidst an escalating series of retaliatory actions nationwide from ICE. In California, the Trump administration has taken aim at state and local policies which limit law enforcement involvement in painful deportations. These “sanctuary” policies, advanced by a growing movement, help keep families together and limit racial profiling. The operation also comes in the wake of a devastating Supreme Court ruling today which allows the federal government to indefinitely detain immigrants without the due process that every person deserves.

The following is a statement prepared in advance of ICE’s threatened operation, issued by the organizations named below:

As community, civil rights, and legal organizations, we stand together to demand an immediate halt to politically motivated abuses of power.

In these situations, it is vital to uncover the truth. We ask that our elected officials vigorously scrutinize ICE’s claims about the arrests it makes. All too often, from Santa Cruz to Texas, ICE’s claims have later been proven false.

Here in Northern California, we know that immigrants are a vital part of our communities and families. We believe all people should be treated fairly, no matter what they look like or where they were born. And we have enacted policies to uphold these values.

Thus, we are deeply troubled by the federal government’s threats against local policies that protect families and defend civil rights. We decry the awful, xenophobic agenda at play, and the trauma raids induce in communities of color. No amount of intimidation can suppress our values or bury our basic rights.

As we organize to demand that retaliatory raids and arrests cease, the “rapid response” networks are also mobilizing an extensive network of attorneys.

We call for full protection of all people’s constitutional rights to due process. ICE must ensure full access for legal representatives, release anyone arrested who is eligible for release, and not whisk people to for-profit detention centers out of state.

This statement is issued by the following coalitions – ACILEP (Alameda County Immigration Legal and Education Partnership), ACUDIR (Alameda County United in Defense of Immigrant Rights), FREE SF (Full Rights Equality & Empowerment SF), Contra Costa East Bay Interfaith Immigration Coalition, Monterey County Rapid Response Network, SIREN (Services, Immigrant Rights, and Education Network) – and the following organizations: Advancing Justice – Asian Law Caucus, African Advocacy Network, American Civil Liberties Union of Northern California, Causa Justa::Just Cause, Centro Legal de la Raza, California Immigrant Policy Center, Dolores Street Community Services, East Bay Alliance for a Sustainable Economy, Filipino Community Center, Immigrant Legal Resource Center, Immigrant Liberation Movement, Interfaith Movement for Human Integrity, La Raza Centro Legal, Legal Services for Children, Mujeres Unidas y Activas, Oakland Community Organizations, Pangea Legal Services, People Acting in Community Together (PACT), Sacred Heart Community Service.

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