• 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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  • Tell Amazon: Stop Powering ICE!
    New research shows that Amazon is helping ICE track, detain, and deport immigrants -- in a big way. We've known that Amazon's servers host Palantir, the company that provides ICE with “mission-critical services,” such as its case management software, and we've been pressuring Amazon to drop Palantir. But it turns out Amazon's role in the deportation machine goes deeper than that. Through intense lobbying of policymakers and law enforcement officials, Amazon and Palantir have secured a role as the backbone for the federal government’s immigration and law enforcement dragnet, allowing them to pursue multi-billion dollar government contracts in various agencies at every single level of law enforcement. These systems are new, and dangerous in new ways. They are accumulating unprecedented amounts of data (everything from facial scans to social media content), and exchanging information among city, state, and regional law enforcement systems, as well as some foreign governments, for the purpose of finding, deporting, and detaining immigrants. DHS and many other law enforcement agencies are spending billions of taxpayer dollars on these tech systems -- and Amazon, Palantir and other tech companies are pushing them to go further. It's time to hold Amazon accountable for its outsized share in building the deportation machine, and demand that they stop. It won't be easy -- Amazon makes billions from these contracts. But the company also depends on consumers -- including millions of Latinx people -- and has to worry about protecting its brand. Recently, the company was forced to raise its minimum wage to $15/hour, which wouldn't have happened without a major campaign demanding it. We can force Amazon to stop helping DHS and ICE target immigrants, if enough of us call them out, stay engaged, and keep the pressure on.
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  • Demand Phil Bacerra Drop Out of Santa Ana Council Race; Abusers Should Not Serve on City Council
    In light of Griselda Govea's call for accountability, we demand that Phil Bacerra drop out of the city council race for Ward 4 in Santa Ana; immediately stop all campaigning; and return all campaign contributions received and spent. In a recent Facebook post Griselda detailed the regular verbal, emotional, and physical abuse that she endured while dating Phil over a period of four years, and called on voters to exercise accountability with their vote this November. There should not be room for abusive people in our politics, nor in our council chambers. Demand that Phil Bacerra drop out of the race and end his campaign by signing this petition. In Griselda's own words: 'Prevent another abuser from getting his hands on our city. Haven’t we gone through enough? Perhaps Phil is right, “ENOUGH IS ENOUGH”. We’re done electing abusers around these neck of the woods. End it before it begins.' See Griselda's full post Here: https://www.facebook.com/griselda.desantos/posts/10212646145776614
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  • Stop the Peppermentiras- Drop the Film for its Latino-Bashing Plot
    "Nearly everything in 'Peppermint' comes back to how immigrants – specifically Latino immigrants – are destroying the country." Kristin Lopez, Remezcla At LatinoJustice we fight the stereotyping and criminalization of our community every day, and films like Peppermint only serve to endanger our communities and make our work that much more difficult. This film pours gasoline on the anti-Latino fire already raging throughout our nation, thanks in no small part to the Trump administration’s harmful policy agenda and the President’s own constant output of disparaging remarks. At a time when hate crimes have been on the rise in America’s largest cities and a majority of Latinxs report feeling less safe since Trump was elected, Peppermint is only reinforcing these dangerous stereotypes and making our communities less safe. That is why we invite you to join us in sending Peppermint to the dustbin of a Redbox rental somewhere at the bottom of the ocean by calling out this film for what it is- a racist pile of garbage, and demanding its producers pull it from theaters immediately.
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  • Stop transfer of immigrants in ICE custody to federal prisons
    On June 8, 2018 Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) announced the transfer of approximately 1,600 people detained under their custody in immigrant detention centers to federal prisons operated by the Bureau of Prisons (BOP). These transfers affected prisons in California, Oregon, Washington, Arizona, and Texas with ICE officials stating that the transfers were to last up to 120 days. These transfers effectively served as a way for ICE to increase its detention capacity by close to 4% overnight without any oversight or prior notice. In doing this, ICE circumvented the existing channels for detention expansion, instead making use of another agency’s resources to carry out its work. These massive transfers have been disastrous for those detained as these BOP facilities have provided them with even less access to legal representation and pastoral care and have not failed to ensure those detained have communication with their loved ones. At the same time, the transfers have also signaled worsening conditions for workers inside the prisons which has had an impact on those detained as well. Given the hiring freeze within the Department of Justice (which oversees BOP), these facilities have turned to the practice of ‘augmentation’, forcing civilian prison workers (teachers, nurses, cooks, etc.) to take on the duties of guards. The combination of a lack of proper staffing and the abusive conditions detained immigrants are subjected to have resulted in cases like Victorville, where an outbreak of chickenpox and scabies took place that was exacerbated by the lack of proper medical staff to address the issues. Along with this, there are reports of Sikh men being held at the Sheridan Prison, having their turbans confiscated and being forced to purchase beanies as a replacement for their religious garb. These two salient examples are just some of many instances that prove that these overnight transfers have only resulted in those detained being subjected to mounting human rights abuses as BOP takes on the work and resulting liability from performing ICE’s work for them.
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  • Save the Cardona/Dunoyer family from deportation
    For 17 years the Cardona/Dunoyer family have lived in the United States after fleeing from their home country due to threats from Columbian guerilla groups. As of March 2017, Consuelo Cardona, Roberto Dunoyer, along with their sons Pablo (age 19), and Camilo (age 16) became the beneficiaries of a private immigration bill, HR 1490. It remains pending as of today. The family has no criminal record. Camilo Dunoyer recently graduated high school and is attending community college in San Diego. Pablo Dunoyer is scheduled to graduate college with his Associate's Degree and has been accepted to the University of San Diego to continue his education. If they are deported they will lose everything that they have worked hard for and their lives will be at risk.
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  • Chicago's Latino Alderman Raymond Lopez Takes Money from Detention Centers for Immigrants
    Lopez has been a staunch supporter of criminalization of immigrants and communities of color, consistently advocating in favor of increasing policing, increasing jail time, and opposing changes to Chicago's Sanctuary city policy, the Welcoming City Ordinance. Today it was revealed that for several years he has been taking thousands of dollars from GEO group, the private corporation that owns immigrant detention centers around the country, including where parents of the children separated at the border are housed. Lopez is the Alderman for Chicago's 15th ward, a mixed ward with many Latinx and Black residents, who are constantly over-policed and criminalized. His ward is also the site of several immigration raids targeting residents based on the faulty Chicago Gang Database.
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  • Chicago City Council Can #AbolishICE By Stopping All Collaboration with ICE Agents
    Around the country communities and elected officials are calling for the abolition of Immigration and Customs Enforcement, the federal agency that conducts immigration raids violating people's civil and human rights. As we continue this fight at the federal level, there are clear policies that could be passed in our city to take away the hold that ICE has on immigrant communities and abolish it from our city. The Welcoming City Ordinance, the ordinance that delineates how Chicago interacts with ICE, still allows for communication and collaboration in a set of broad cases - when people have been accused of a felony (regardless of whether they have been convicted), when someone has been convicted of any felony at any point in their life, and when someone has been added to Chicago's flawed gang database. These carveouts are not a matter of public safety, rather of politics. In addition, the Chicago Gang Database, which contains the names of 128,000 adults who are mostly Black and some Latinx, is consistently shared with federal agencies, including ICE, leading to immigration raids in the homes of people whose names are on the list. If Chicago elected officials are serious about the call to #AbolishICE, they must first commit to take action on local policies that address the city's relationship to ICE and policing of immigrant communities and communities of color.
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  • No Fences, No Cages -- Revoke GEO's business license to operate the NWDC!
    On July 6th, 2018, Mayor Woodards stated, “I vow that I will continue to fight for the health, safety and success of immigrants and refugees.” At the same time, the City of Tacoma is building a fence to prevent activists from calling attention to human rights abuses at the NWDC. The fence is merely a symptom of the disease of detention and deportation that the city facilitates. This reveals the contradiction in Tacoma City government. How can Tacoma call itself a “Welcoming City” with people who fight for the health and safety of immigrants when city government fails to enforce health and safety regulations at the detention center? We say that it cannot. Amid long-term issues regarding a lack of nutritious food, clean clothes and drinkable water, the NWDC is right now experiencing a health crisis -- a chickenpox outbreak. GEO Group’s failure to manage the health and safety of the people there is currently on display, as even US Representative Derek Kilmer was unable to visit to investigate conditions due to health concerns in June 2018. El 6 de julio la Alcaldesa Woodwards dijo “Me comprometo a seguir luchando por la salud, seguridad y éxito de inmigrantes y refugiados.” Al mismo tiempo la Ciudad de Tacoma está construyendo una barda para prevenir que lxs activistas sigan llamando la atención a los abusos a los derechos humanos en NWDC. La barda es sólo un síntoma de la enfermedad de la detención y deportación que la ciudad permite. ¿Cómo puede Tacoma autodenominarse una “Ciudad Acogedora” con la gente quien lucha por la salud y seguridad de inmigrantes, cuando el gobierno de la ciudad fracasa en enforzar las regulaciones de salud y seguridad en el centro de detención? Nosotrxs decimos que no puede. Entre varios preocupaciones que han ocurrido por mucho tiempo con respecto a la falta de comida nutritiva, ropa limpia y agua potable, en el NWDC hay una crisis de salud - un brote de varicela. Es obvio que el Geo Group ha fracasado en manejar la salud y la seguridad de la gente, como el representante Derek Kilmer no lo dejaron entrar a investigar las condiciones debido a las preocupaciones de salud en junio del presente año.
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  • Calling All Latinx Therapists Into Action to Abolish ICE
    For the past two months our Latinx migrant community has experienced tremendous amounts of physical and emotional trauma. Thousands of migrants have arrived at the U.S. border after traveling through several countries to ask for asylum, only to be denied entry. They find themselves in despair and limbo, overwhelmed by the thought of the long treacherous journey back home. For the thousands who have been able to enter, they have been captured and imprisoned. Unjustly criminalized, they face charges that will forever impact their ability to live in the U.S. free from fear and persecution. Their children have been forcibly taken from them and incarcerated in migrant prisons across the country. We have yet to understand the emotional and physical toll of this latest assault on our community. For over twenty years, migrant adults have been mandatorily detained with countless accounts of abuse and death, including the detention of entire families (American Civil Liberties Union, 2016). This crisis, though not new, has taken a new form of brutality—to incarcerate children and youth by the thousands. For years, unaccompanied minors have been incarcerated for months at a time. Few in the U.S. are aware that a growing number of migrant youth are being locked up in detention, accused of gang affiliation. We are deeply concerned to learn that medical staff, including mental health professionals, are being used as tools of the state to further control and oppress these children and youth (Nilsen, 2018). The Trump administration continues to fund and funnel children newly separated from their parents to Shiloh Treatment Center in Texas. Shiloh was recently sued by the Center for Constitutional and Human Rights for administering a cocktail of psychotropic medications, including antipsychotics with limited FDA approval. It has been found that these drugs have had severe effects on the bodies of the unaccompanied minors being held in these detention centers (Reuters, 2018.) Migrant youth and children are suffering detained across the country. At the Shenandoah Valley Juvenile Detention Center in Virginia, youth as young as 14 years old say they were beaten while handcuffed and left shivering naked in solitary confinement (AP, 2018). Recent victims of the current zero-tolerance policy are showing signs of post-traumatic stress disorder. Doctors throughout the state of New York who have treated migrant children say many of them have begun to hear voices after being separated from their parents and detained. Additionally, a recent investigation showed that therapy notes of counselors working with detained children are being used in court to further criminalize and incarcerate them (Nilsen, Vox). We denounce this unethical practice by the Trump Administration. As Latinx mental health practitioners, we will not to be used as tools of oppression nor will we sit idle as our communities are caged, abused and traumatized. The photo and video images of children crying, standing by U.S. Border Patrol Officers and their mothers as well as the audio of dozens of children screaming in tears asking desperately for their parents, has created tremendous grief and anxiety among Latinx living in this country. The levels of dehumanization and violence we are exposed to on a daily basis can cause secondary trauma at a mass collective scale. Millions of people in our communities are migrants who are undocumented. Many of us have lived in fear for years. Many of us have suffered abuse at the hands of police and ICE agents. Many of us have been in deportation proceedings or have served time inside migrant prisons. These images in the media are haunting reminders wreaking havoc on our nervous systems. American Civil Liberties Union, D. W. (2016, February). detentionwatchnetwork.org. Retrieved from www.detentionwatchnetwork.org/sites/default/files/reports/fatal%20Neglect%20ACLU-DWN-NIJC-pdf AP. (2018, June 21). www.cnbc.com. Retrieved from cnbc.com: www.cnbc.com/2018/06/21/young-immigrants-detained-in-virginia-center-allege-abuse.html Nilsen, E. (n.d.). Vox. (K. w. them., Ed.) Retrieved from Vox.com: http://www.vox.com/policy-and-politics/2018/6/18/17449150/family-separation-policy-immigration-dhs.orr-health-records-undocumented-kids Reuters. (June, 21 2018). NBC News. Retrieved from nbcnews.com: https://nbcnews.com/health/kids/u-s-centers-force-migrant-children-take-drugs-lawsuit-n885386
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