• 21 Hunger Strikers Demand Better Conditions at McHenry County Detention Center
    21 people currently being detained at McHenry Detention Center in Illinois launched a hunger strike six days ago in response to insufficient food options and mistreatment on behalf of guards towards detainees, according to information provided by detainees and their families to OCAD. In response to the hunger strike, authorities in the detention center have retaliated against strikers by denying the 21 hunger strikers recreational time, confiscating items purchased through commissary, and denying access to showers. “The fact that they are detained should not mean that it is right for them to be mistreated. This is inhumane,” said a family member of a person inside the detention center. The 21 hunger strikers at McHenry are risking their lives and are at risk of retaliation at the hands of McHenry guards. We need your help to amplify their demands and put public pressure on ICE and the McHenry Detention Center officials. Let them know the community is watching.
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  • Tell Tacoma not to Block WA State's Lawsuit Against GEO Group!
    In March 2017, Tacoma City Council enacted emergency interim zoning regulations pertaining to correctional facilities. The explicit goal at that time was to make it more difficult for correctional facilities to expand. Since it opened with 516 beds in 2005, the Northwest Detention Center (NWDC) has expanded twice more to 1,575 beds, and one council member was concerned that it would expand again. In December, the Planning Commission rewrote a proposal to change the municipal code to explicitly state that immigrant detention centers are defined as correctional facilities. We think this will only help GEO Group to fight a lawsuit that demands it pay minimum wage to detained immigrants. In September 2017, the Washington State Attorney General filed a lawsuit against GEO for failing to pay minimum wage. GEO Group currently pays people $1 per day, and sometimes only snacks, to do most of the work at the facility, including the cooking, cleaning, and laundry. GEO Group claims it doesn’t have to pay workers minimum wage because the detention center is a correctional facility. In the September 20 press conference announcing the lawsuit, however, Attorney General Bob Ferguson pointed out that immigrant detention centers are not correctional facilities -- correctional facilities are for people going through the criminal justice system, not administrative immigration proceedings. If Tacoma changes its municipal code, GEO can use this change as evidence that it should get to keep paying people $1 per day. Tell the City of Tacoma not to do GEO Group’s bidding, and not to sabotage the state minimum wage!
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  • Drop all criminal charges against workers in Tennessee
    This past November, 20 people were arrested by ICE and the Tennessee Highway Patrol while working at a warehouse in Memphis, TN. Under the Trump administration these workers are now facing federal charges for working without papers and could face up to 5 years in prison before being deported. Trump, US Attorney Jeff Sessions and ICE director Homan want to increase workplace raids, and increase criminalization of immigrants by prosecuting more cases and asking for long prison sentences before deportation. If this Tennessee raid is a sign of what’s to come, taking action is crucial. The decision to pursue or drop all charges is in the hands of US Attorney Michael Dunavant.
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  • There's nothing "catchy" about racism: Pledge to Boycott "Illegal Tacos"
    In a time when there is a president who uses racist rhetoric to describe immigrants on a near-daily basis in order to drum up support for his white supremacist agenda, naming this restaurant "Illegal Tacos" is a slap in the face to those in our community who face this harassment and discrimination in their lives. Bragging about only hiring Mexican chefs to authentically prepare the food, as the restaurant's owner Florian Furxhiu stated in a Philly.com piece, only makes things worse. Once again our community is valued only for their labor and not their huamnity.If Furxhiu wants to open an authentic Mexican restaurant, he should do so in solidarity with the folks making his food and from whose culture the recipes come and not name his restaurant after a dehumanizing slur. PS: If you wish to actually support Philadelphia's immigrant community please consider donating to Juntos. We are a locally based immigrant-rights organization that fights for the rights and humanity of our community. To donate please go to vamosjuntos.org/donate
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  • Alfonso Lopez Cut ALL ties to Private Immigration Company and Pay Reparations to Migrants
    We – community members, local organizations, groups, and allies of the migrant community in Virginia – are outraged that one of the few Latinx delegates in Virginia, Alfonso Lopez of the 49th District, has been receiving wages from Immigration Centers of America (ICA). It was revealed that from 2014 to 2016 Delegate Alfonso Lopez received at least $15,000 in wages from Immigration Centers of America. ICA is a toxic private prison company that operates the largest immigration detention camp in Virginia, ICA-Farmville. The majority of people detained in Virginia or Washington, D.C. are incarcerated at ICA-Farmville. We, as members of the migrant community, have experienced heartbreak and trauma at the doors of this detention camp. Alfonso Lopez’s attempts to justify his wages from ICA are disingenuous and hypocritical for a “champion” of migrants. Numerous people have died in ICE custody, including Anibal Ramirez of Woodbridge, who under custody at ICA-Farmville died due to medical neglect. During the Obama administration and the time Alfonso Lopez consulted for ICA, the largest number of people detained and deported rose and ICA-Farmville increased its average daily population of detention by almost 200 people. The detention and deportation machine that Alfonso Lopez has helped build has now been handed to an outright racist administration. The current administration has endangered programs like Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA) and Temporary Protected Status (TPS), putting thousands more migrant lives at risk of detention. It is clear that ICA and any detention camp is a direct threat to the migrant community. Alfonso Lopez cannot be a “champion” for the migrant community while at the same time profiting from its incarceration. We – community members, local organizations, groups, and allies of the migrant community in Virginia – demand accountability from Delegate Alfonso Lopez. We will not stand for this abuse of our community because we believe that an attack against one of us is an attack against us all. Collectively, For more info: https://www.washingtonpost.com/local/virginia-politics/veteran-latino-lawmaker-criticized-for-work-with-immigrant-detention-center/2017/12/09/99168640-db6a-11e7-b1a8-62589434a581_story.html?utm_term=.f6ab1244e300 https://www.facebook.com/LaColectiVA703/posts/738502729694265
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  • Save Tacoma's Citizens' Forum!
    The City of Tacoma allows for public comments at its Tuesday public meetings. They don't like what we have to say, so they are canceling them! Join us for a rally outside Tacoma City Hall to protest the canceling of the Citizens’ Forum/public comments. With dangerous institutions like ICE, GEO Group and LNG advancing their agendas of incarceration, racism, and environmental destruction in Tacoma, we need to fight to preserve the spaces where the people's’ voices can be heard.
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    Created by NWDC Resistance Picture
  • NO 287g in Rutherford County!
    On, Monday, November 27, Reuters released an article about the 287g program, which deputizes local police and sheriffs to work as immigration police directly with the Trump administration. A Reuters reporter submitted a Freedom of Information Act request to find out which counties around the country are exploring joining the 287g program and Rutherford county came up in the FOIA. The Knox County Sheriff's Department recently joined the 287g program in July, after previously having blocked from joining the program in 2013 due to civil rights and profiling concerns after Knoxville Sheriff JJ Jones pledged to "Stack immigrants like cordwood" in the county jail. And Davidson County Sheriff Daron Hall, who once championed the 287g program, abandoned the 287g program in 2012 after Nashville residents denounced it as an anti-immigrant racial profiling policy that resulted in over 10,000 deportations for low-level offenses such as traffic violations. Just over a month ago, Rutherford County was targeted by white supremacist hate groups with an anti-immigrant "White Lives Matter" Rally, which was eventually canceled after thousands of Rutherford County Residents mobilized to stand up against hate. Now is our chance to show that we won't tolerate organized hate campaigns against immigrants from our local officials, either. Will you sign this petition asking the Rutherford County Sheriff's Department to release a statement, saying they are not interested in the discredited 287g program and that they will not seek to join it?
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    Created by Nashville Community Defense
  • Jose Torres rebuilt New Orleans. Now ICE wants to deport him.
    Jose Torres is a father and immigrant leader who has decided to take a stand against the scapegoating of his family and the entire immigrant community. As an 18 year old recently arrived to the United States, Jose survived and escaped human trafficking. He made his way to New Orleans, where he found work rebuilding the city after Hurricane Katrina. He has worked in construction there ever since and has raised his family in the city of Gretna in Jefferson Parish, Louisiana. Jose took Sanctuary at New Orleans's First Grace United Methodist Church on November 15, 2017 because, in his own words, "it's every parent's responsibility to go to the ends of the earth for their children." Jose’s two daughters suffer from chronic health conditions that require Jose’s constant support: Kimberly has had a life-threatening seizure disorder since birth, and Julissa has chronic tonsillitis. Jose drives them to doctor’s appointments, fills their prescriptions, and makes sure they get the love and care all children need. Jose has been a long-time leader in his community. He established a designated space in his community of Gretna, Louisiana for low-wage workers to seek work safe from wage theft and criminalization, and has spoken out in D.C. against the abuses of the private prison industry. It is fully within the New Orleans Immigration and Customs Enforcement office's authority to stop Jose's deportation. Jose belongs with his daughters in the city that he helped rebuild. Sign today to keep them together.
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  • Please, help us save AROLDO SOTO CONTRERAS: Not his deportation!!
    I, Ronald Fernando Contreras, am speaking on behalf of my family, and specifically, my father, Aroldo Contreras. My father is a crucial and needed part of our family unit. He is not only the most devoted and loyal father a family could ever hope to claim as their own, he is also the hardest working man I have ever known. He leads by example in our household by upholding values and enforcing strong character in me and my two younger brothers. My entire life, he has put the needs of us - his family - first. He instead of worrying about himself, he always asks first about our needs and what he can do to help us in any way possible. My father is more than just strong role model. He is also a crucial caretaker of our family. Whenever we get sick and need to go to the doctor, or the emergency room, my father is always the one who takes us. He worries about wellbeing and will do anything in his power to stop our suffering. "As a friend of Ronald Contreras the eldest son of Aroldo Soto Contreras, I can not stress how important it is for him to have his father by his side. Senior year of high school is a tumultuous period of uncertainty, stress, anxiety, and a little bit of excitement. Big decisions are made during this short period, and as someone who just went through it, having both my parents by my side was a huge weight off my chest. I can not imagine Ronald's current emotional state. Not only is he thinking about which colleges to apply to, whether or not his SAT scores are high enough, but now he has to also wonder if his father is going to be there to see him graduate. As the daughter of immigrant parents, I know how special that moment is for one's family" Alejandra Chajon. Aroldo Soto-Contreras came to America from Guatemala at age 14 in 1989, fleeing the civil war that was going on there. While he did have three DWI arrests during his early years in this country, he has since reformed himself, married, and is now the father of three children. He has held a steady job at a pizzeria in Stamford, CT for nearly twenty years, and his family has lived at the same house in Port Chester for almost a decade. ====================== Yo, Ronald Fernando Contreras, hablo en nombre de mi familia, y específicamente, de mi padre, Aroldo Contreras. Mi padre es una parte crucial y necesaria de nuestra unidad familiar. Él no solo es el padre más devoto y leal que una familia podría aspirar a tener como propio, también es el hombre más trabajador que he conocido. Él lidera con el ejemplo en nuestra casa defendiendo valores y reforzando el carácter fuerte en mí y en mis dos hermanos menores. Toda mi vida, él ha puesto las necesidades de nosotros, su familia, primero. En lugar de preocuparse por sí mismo, siempre pregunta primero sobre nuestras necesidades y qué puede hacer para ayudarnos de cualquier manera posible. Mi padre es más que solo un fuerte modelo a seguir. Él es también un cuidador crucial de nuestra familia. Cada vez que nos enfermamos y tenemos que ir al médico o a la sala de emergencias, mi padre siempre es quien nos lleva. Él se preocupa por el bienestar y hará todo lo que esté a su alcance para detener nuestro sufrimiento. "Como amiga de Ronald Contreras, el hijo mayor de Aroldo Soto Contreras, no puedo enfatizar lo importante que es para él tener a su padre a su lado. El último año de la escuela secundaria es un período tumultuoso de incertidumbre, estrés, ansiedad y un poco de emoción. Las grandes decisiones se toman durante este corto período, y como alguien que acaba de pasar por eso, tener a mis dos padres a mi lado era un gran peso sobre mi pecho. No puedo imaginar el estado emocional actual de Ronald. No solo está pensando a qué universidades debe postularse, si sus puntajes SAT son o no lo suficientemente altos, pero ahora también tiene que preguntarse si su padre estará allí para verlo graduarse. Como hija de padres inmigrantes, sé lo especial que es ese momento para la familia de uno ", Alejandra Chajon. Aroldo Soto-Contreras vino a Estados Unidos desde Guatemala a los 14 años en 1989, huyendo de la guerra civil que estaba ocurriendo allí. Si bien tuvo tres arrestos por DWI durante sus primeros años en este país, desde entonces se ha reformado, se ha casado y ahora es padre de tres hijos. Él ha tenido un trabajo estable en una pizzería en Stamford, CT durante casi veinte años, y su familia ha vivido en la misma casa en Port Chester durante casi una década.
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  • Help us keep Nelson Pinos home
    Nelson Pinos Gonzalez is a father of three; resident of New Haven, CT, who has lived in the United States since 1993. On October 4th during a check-in, Nelson was asked to come back with a one-way ticket to Ecuador dated November 30th. On November 6th, Nelson presented his ticket accompanied by over a dozen community members at the Abraham A. Ribicoff Federal Building in Hartford. Nelson lives with his long-time partner and his three children are U.S. citizens ages 15, 12 and 5. He is the only provider for his family. He has worked for the same company for the last 15 years. Unfortunately, just recently he was asked to not come to his work until his legal situation is fixed. His oldest daughter Kelly, a sophomore at Wilbur Cross High School said on November 6th, “We also need a father’s view on life. It can’t just be a mother. I love my father with all my heart. I have a 5-year-old brother who has no idea what is going on. My brother still has so many years to grow up with my dad. ... I beg immigration to let him stay ... He has never done anything wrong,” Kelly said. “His home is here with us.” Nelson and his family are members of the St. Anthony’s Church, as well as Unidad Latina en Acción. Since they became involved, they have committed to supporting other people in similar situations as well as participating in cultural activities throughout the city. Nelson has become the most recent case in which the current administration threats to tear apart immigrant families in an arbitrary and malicious manner. His case resonates with the case of Luis Barrios, Nury Chavarria, Marco Reyes and the Ramos family: all of which threatened to separate children from their parents – as well as Sujitno Sajuti, and elder immigrant from West Hartford. Please sign this petition, and join us as we denounce the injustices of this administration against immigrant families!
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  • RELEASE MELECIO ANDAZOLA MORALES FROM DETENTION
    Melecio Andazola Morales is a father to 4 children, the youngest of whom is only 2 years old. In May 1998, he crossed the border and has been working in the U.S. ever since. He has spent his time here working in construction: from the Denver Coliseum, the Denver Airport, to the booming housing market he’s helped Colorado grow. He has no criminal record, and his children are all U.S. citizens. In 2017, Melecio’s daughter Viviana, a current senior at Yale, petitioned for Melecio to obtain residency. When they arrived at the U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services building in Denver, one of the state officers told Viviana that she did not need to go into the court with her father. However, Viviana asked to go with him anyway. Though the officer had mentioned that Melecio had been recommended for approval, she told Viviana that she had to leave. Viviana, confused, left the room. Twenty minutes later, Melecio’s lawyer informed Viviana that her father had been aggressively removed from the room. She was not allowed to speak to her father until ICE arrived on the premises. When ICE entered, they aggressively pushed Melecio’s lawyer and interpreter out of the room, and said that they had an expedited removal proceeding for Melecio. However, they refused to show the lawyer proof. Since October 12, Melecio has been detained in the ICE Denver Contract Detention Facility in Aurora, CO without due process. He has anxiety, and does not have his medication in detention with him. We are asking that Melecio be immediately released from detention. Please sign and circulate so that Melecio can be reunited with his family. You can call Jeffrey D. Lynch, Acting Field Director of Colorado ICE through this call sheet template: https://docs.google.com/document/d/17zNEBjkZjO-AziJFpoZNehcmG0KcaYjpq-TmrIo8M3o/edit Here is the Gofundme: https://www.gofundme.com/support-melecio-andazola-morales
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  • Stop Ibrahim Momin from being #DeportedToDeath to Bangladesh
    Ibrahim Momin and his two brothers fled Bangladesh in 2009 after being brutally beaten because of his father's political activities. Ibrahim traveled to Ecuador, and traveled across land through at least seven countries for nearly a year in order to seek safety to the United States. However, Ibrahim has faced a constant series of challenges in finding safety here. He has had encounters with the police which led to him being turned over to ICE. He has been sent to immigration detention centers in Alabama, Louisiana, and New Jersey multiple times and has served many months on the inside. He has had his asylum cases denied despite concrete evidence and documentation of the threats he faces, including the murder of his father while Ibrahim was still in detention. While Ibrahim has not been detained, he worked in restaurants in order to support himself, support his families, and get his life on track. Ibrahim was once again detained in on September 29th 2017 from his workplace in Astoria, Queens in NYC by NYPD and ICE officers. He is currently being held at Pine Prairie ICE Processing Center in Louisiana. Extrajudicial killings in Bangladesh have been well documented, including by the U.S. State Department. Sending Ibrahim back to Bangladesh would mean him being #DeportedToDeath IBRAHIM MUST BE REALEASED NOW! Please Take a Moment to make a call and Demand Ibrahim's Release Newark ICE Field Office: 973-776-3240 - Press 2, then - Press 4 Sample Script: "Hi, my name is __, and I am calling to demand that you release Ibrahim Momin (A# 088 440 468). Ibrahim fled Bangladesh after a brutal attack as a result of his father's political activities and affiliations. After Ibrahim fled to save his life, his father was killed by his political opponents. Ibrahim life will be in danger should he be deported back to Bangladesh. He should be released so he can continue building his life with safety."
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    Created by Fahd Ahmed