• Tell the Sheriff to Follow Due Process and Destroy RGID After Mandatory Hearing
    Last week members of the coalition to Erase the Cook County Gang Database known as RGID (Regional Gang Intelligence Database) learned of the Sheriff's Office plans to destroy the database before the Cook County Board of Commissioners holds a mandatory public hearing required by the Ordinance approved last month. This expedited approval and comments by the Sheriff's Office should raise red flags to anyone that believes in transparency and processes of accountability of law enforcement. Just because the RGID is destroyed doesn’t mean the harm stops to exist and the Sheriff’s department should follow the proper steps to dismantle the database. For criminalized communities, such as in the case of people included in RGID without due process, having knowledge of which agencies accessed their information can be instrumental to defend their rights in front of agencies such as ICE, FBI, DHS, and State’s Attorney among others. Check out the new report on the Regional Gang Intelligence Database (LINK). Sign and share the petition today.
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    Created by Chicago I.
  • Stop the Deportation of Nigerien Opposition Activist
    Ali Marounfa (also known as Ali Tera), was born in Niger, West Africa and has lived in the United States for the past thirty years. Ali, 58, has two teenage daughters who are US citizens. A political activist with the Moden Fa Lumana part and the past president of the Niger Association in North Carolina who has publicly denounced corruption in the governing administration, he has been held in Stewart Detention Center in Georgia since June 2017, reportedly detained at the request of the government of President Mahamadou Issoufou, who currently hosts US military bases in Niger. He is not a criminal or a terrorist. Ali has been ordered deported by April 4, 2019. In addition to cruelly separating his family to pay back a Trump foreign policy ally, Ali's family fears his deportation would result in his imprisonment and torture. According to Amnesty International, other members of Moden Fa Lumana have received prison terms for criticizing the government on social media: https://www.amnesty.org/en/countries/africa/niger/report-niger/ Sen. Tillis has intervened to demand that ICE support other political activists like Liu Xia of China (https://www.congress.gov/bill/115th-congress/senate-bill/1587/cosponsors?q=%7B%22search%22%3A%5B%22%5C%22section+245+of+the+Immigration+and+Nationality+Act%5C%22+and+%5C%22for+the+relief+of%5C%22%22%5D%7D&r=23). He should act now to stop this politically motivated family separation.
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  • Lightfoot Should Reject Anti-Immigrant Endorsement
    Chicago Mayoral Candidate Lori Lightfoot has said she is a progressive, pro-immigrant candidate, and has committed to moving forward some pro-immigrant reforms. However, the presence of two Aldermen from Chicago’s most conservative Aldermen at a recent Lori Lightfoot endorsement caused the immigrant community concern. Alderman Sposato recently condemned Chicago’s status as a sanctuary city, stating that elected officials should ignore the immigrant community and work closely with ICE to deport Chicago residents. Watch the video here: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=tk0WsYfQLTo Alderman Napolitano is the only Republican in City Council and held a press conference the day after the city created IDs that were inclusive of Chicago’s immigrant residents. To show that she stands with the immigrant community Candidate Lori Lightfoot should denounce these anti-immigrant stances and reject any possible endorsements.
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  • Tell Arlington Board: No Amazon in VA!
    Arlington County, Virginia is set to vote on the HQ2 bid on March 16th. Amazon HQ2 is bad news for the people of Arlington and Virginia. -HQ2 will add to increased living costs and displacement for our families -Amazon supports Trump’s anti-immigrant agenda, selling technology to ICE that enables family separation and deportations -A taxpayer-funded giveaway to the richest billionaire on the planet is theft of public money that should go to schools, housing, healthcare and benefits #ForUsNotAmazon New Yorkers already recognized the true impacts that Amazon HQ2 would have on them, and they organized and won. If enough of us come together to oppose this, we can run Amazon out of our town too. #NoAmazonInVA #ForUsNotAmazon
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  • #CleanUpABMS: CLEAN UP YOUR ACT, DON'T THROW AWAY WORKERS!
    SUPPORT ABMS-INC WORKERS FIRED AFTER DEFENDING THEIR RIGHTS! We are calling on you to support a group of South Suburban workers fighting back against discrimination and wage theft. On February 22nd, seven strong and united Latinx workers who worked many years to keep South Holland School District 151 schools clean were unjustly terminated by Alpha Building Maintenance Services Inc. When these workers organized and defended their rights and the rights of their colleagues, they were terminated by the company. ABMS-Inc. didn’t think twice about firing these hard-working employees. Over the past five years, these workers have organized against ongoing labor abuses, including wage theft. The company has robbed workers of their salaries by missing entire pay checks, expecting them to work through their unpaid breaks, not compensating them for working at additional sites (such as Pace buses), and more. Recently, these workers were discriminated against and harassed to fill out forms long after the statutory mandate to fill one out had passed. Only Latinx workers were targeted by their employer to sign these forms. Their non-Latinx colleagues were not intimidated in this way. // APOYA A EX-TRABAJADORES DE ABMS-INC DEFENDIENDO SUS DERECHOS! El 22 de febrero, siete trabajadores Latinos fuertes y unidos que trabajaron durante muchos años para mantener limpias las escuelas del Distrito Escolar 151 de South Holland, fueron despedidos injustamente por Alpha Building Maintenance Services Inc. Cuando estos trabajadores organizaron y defendieron sus derechos y los derechos de sus colegas, fueron despedidos por la empresa. ABMS-Inc. no pensó dos veces en despedir a estos trabajadores. En los últimos cinco años, estos trabajadores se han organizado en contra de los abusos laborales, incluyendo el robo de salario. La compañía les ha robado a los trabajadores sus salarios al perder cheques completos de pago, poniéndolos a trabajar durante sus breaks no pagados, no compensándolos por trabajar en sitios adicionales (como los camiones Pace), y más. Recientemente, estos trabajadores fueron discriminados y hostigados para llenar aplicaciones del trabajo mucho después de que el mandato legal para completar uno hubiera pasado. Sólo los trabajadores Latinos fueron seleccionados por su empleador para firmar estos formularios. Sus colegas no Latinos no fueron intimidados de esta manera.
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  • SUNY Chancellor Johnson Must Divest from Coal Company Poisoning Puerto Rico
    Chancellor Johnson claims that she's assisting Puerto Rico with relief efforts following Hurricane Maria yet she collected nearly $300,000 as an AES board member and owns over $2.5 million in stock. She profits while the people of Puerto Rico are being poisoned. https://www.google.com/amp/s/www.timesunion.com/news/amp/SUNY-Chancellor-Johnson-resigns-from-power-13671599.php https://youtu.be/996uiE8bL-4 https://news.littlesis.org/2019/02/18/suny-chancellor-sits-on-board-of-aes-a-coal-power-company-dumping-toxic-waste-in-puerto-rico/ http://periodismoinvestigativo.com/2018/03/toxins-from-aess-ashes-are-contaminating-groundwater-in-puerto-rico/ https://www.democracynow.org/2018/3/9/toxic_coal_ash_being_dumped_in
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  • Santa Ana City Council: Rescind the $25M Police Association Contract
    On Tuesday, February 5, 2019, the Council narrowly approved a Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) agreeing to a pay increase for officers in the Santa Ana Police Department amounting to more than $25 million over the course of three years. At that meeting, council members were implored by members of the community to reject this MOU given uncertainty over Santa Ana’s current financial health; however, the majority of the Council disregarded the public’s input and moved forward with approving the MOU. As justification for approving this agreement, members of the Council majority offered explanations that ranged from incomprehensible to downright untruthful. Mayor Pulido was characteristically dismissive of members of the public and his colleagues. Councilmember Sarmiento spoke many words without making a cogent point or offering an explanation for why he felt that such a generous pay increase is warranted at this time or a legitimate use of Measure X revenue. Councilmember Solorio assured residents that these raises will not leverage Measure X tax revenue, despite the fact that the Staff Report accompanying the agenda item specifically identified this revenue as a source of funding. And Councilmember Penaloza was primarily concerned with where Santa Ana Police Department salaries will fall when ranked against other municipalities after the pay increase, indicating he is comfortable with the mark of distinction for our police department being how highly officers are paid rather than how well they serve our community. Given the lack of thoughtful discussion and public debate on this issue, residents of Santa Ana are rightfully displeased with the outcome of your decision to approve this MOU. We are also concerned that this decision was made without the benefit of an accurate understanding of our city’s current fiscal situation. The fact that the Council recently dismissed our City Manager, whose responsibility it was to provide an objective and fact-based assessment of our finances to enable the Council to make prudent and sustainable fiscal decisions, further erodes the public’s confidence that this MOU was approved based on a comprehensive understanding of its short- and long-term impacts to Santa Ana’s finances. As Santa Ana’s elected officials, they have an obligation to act in a manner that is aligned with the needs and values of the community they serve. Execution of the MOU to increase officer pay was not consistent with their obligations to our community, but they have an opportunity to make that right. For the sake of Santa Ana’s financial health and the well-being of its residents,they should move to restore the public’s trust by rescinding the current MOU and going back to the drawing board.
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  • Our People Are Dying In Prison: End Medical Neglect Now!
    Mr. Washington claimed in his filing that the corrections agency was actively refusing to give him medication for his medical conditions, including “diabetes, liver conditions, and blood pressure issues. Six weeks after he filed a court document claiming that he was “being killed” due to inadequate medical care he died of health complications. Mistreatment inside Arizona prisons must not be ignored our people are suffering inside these cages. We must denounce this treatment and demand an independent investigation into Mr. Washington’s death and medical care inside the Department of Corrections. “Prisons don't disappear problems they disappear people.” - Angela Davis
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  • Join DMSC to tell ICE: Release the El Paso Hunger Strikers
    On December 27th, Sikh asylum seekers started a hunger strike to protest the discrimination, verbal abuse, lack of language access, and prolonged detention they have faced at the hands of ICE. The hunger strikers were joined shortly after by more Sikh and Cuban asylum seekers who have faced similar discrimination and lengthy detention. ICE has taken the extreme step of force-feeding nine hunger strikers through plastic nasal tubes, a painful and inhumane process. When asked if those being force-fed were being treated well by medical staff, one man simply responded: "they don't care". ICE has a history of cruelty and discrimination. This is only one of several hunger strikes happening across the country, which speaks to a pervasive problem with this government institution. While immediate relief for all hunger strikers is key, the only acceptable permanent solution is for the government to abolish the immigrant detention system, cease the criminalization of migrants, and provide safe and fair opportunities for immigration. Asylum-seekers should not have to endanger their own health and expose themselves to retaliation from ICE in order to make progress in their cases. We call on civil society to ask that ICE stop torturing asylum seekers and instead do the work of considering their claims in a legal hearing.
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  • Pass the Ordinance to Stop the Sheriff from Reactivating the Cook County Gang Database
    In December of 2018, Commissioner Alma Anaya introduced an ordinance to protect the rights of Cook County residents by prohibiting the use of the county's gang database until the completion of the Inspector General's investigation into the use and impact of the database. In January, the Cook County Sheriff's office announced it decommissioned the Regional Gang Intelligence Database (RGID) but failed to answer questions of how the information was handled since the inception of the database. If passed, ordinance #19-0687 would: (a) Prohibit the Sheriff from recommissioning RGID (b) Stop the Sheriff's office from adding new information to RGID (c) Stop the office of the Sheriff from sharing information previously kept in the RGID system (d) Set up public hearings to review how RGID has been used in the past In Cook County, the sheriff's department has managed this database of at least 25,000 people since the early 2000s. According to a ProPublica investigation, the list includes “hundreds whose gangs aren’t known and hundreds who are dead.” Authorities from 371 different agencies including the Department of Homeland Security, which includes Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) have access to the data, and could potentially use it to target individuals. The inclusion of a person's name on the database can adversely affect employment, housing, bail/bond and parole decisions, and lead to false arrest, deportation, citizenship, and other life devastating consequences. Individuals are never notified when their names have been placed in the database and therefore never have an opportunity to challenge the charges or provide evidence in their defense. The lack of notification, judicial process, or opportunity for self-defense and review, create an environment ripe for civil rights violations and abuse of power. Join us in asking the Cook County Board of Commissioners to hold Tom Dart, Cook County Sheriff, accountable by passing Ordinance #19-0687 at the next Criminal Justice committee meeting on February 20, 2019. Read the Ordinance #19-0687 here: https://cook-county.legistar.com/LegislationDetail.aspx?ID=3775860&GUID=49C64AF7-4FDB-4F89-B53F-80214E7E68C7&Options=&Search=&FullText=1
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  • Tell Santa Ana Council: Don’t Destroy Police Misconduct Records!
    Santa Ana Police Chief, David Valentin requested the Santa Ana City Council to give the Police Department permission to destroy eight boxes of police records related to officers’ use of force, in-custody injuries, and employee misconduct. This request to the Council comes in response to a new state law that gives the public access to police records after years of secrecy. Chief Valentin made this request at the January 15th city council meeting before it was pulled from the meeting’s agenda. Based on other departments’ attempts to destroy their records across the state, we can expect the issue to return before the city council. Santa Ana residents have a right to know the full scope of police misconduct within their communities. Destroying these records decreases transparency, undermines accountability of local government, and harms public safety. We have the fundamental right to know how police use -- and abuse -- their powers. Join us in demanding that the City Council uphold accountability and transparency, by voting to preserve police misconduct and brutality records!
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  • Sign Now: End Police Brutality, Fire Killers of Teen Antonio Arce!
    Silvia retweeted a headline that said, ‘Doing nothing is not acceptable’. She has continued to be silent on the murder of Antonio Arce. Police continue to murder us, just within the first 16 days of 2019, there have been four shootings involving law-enforcement officers in Maricopa County. In each case, the person shot by an officer was a teenager. We can not allow for more police to continue to murder and criminalize our communities. We must start by fighting for justice for Antonio Arce and make sure no more deaths happen at the violent hands of Police. "If they want to tarnish my son, they are wrong. Apart from the fact that they killed him, they want to destroy him. No. I won't allow it; I want justice," the teen's mother, Sandra Gonzalez
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    Created by Puente H. Picture