Summer 2016 National Immigrant
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Orlando Massacre, Immigrant Raids: Hate Never Stop Around the Country!
In This Issue:
1) Orlando Massacre Comes After Lawmakers in U.S. Filed More Than 200 Anti-LGBT Bills
2) May Day 2016 Immigrant Rights March:Reports Across the Country
3) Private Prison CEOs ‘Pleased’ Their Earnings Soared From Keeping Immigrant Kids In Detention
4) CAPAC Members React to New DOJ Rules for Chinese Espionage Cases
5) Is White House leaking warnings of deportation raids to ‘terrorize’ immig communities?
6) ICE Plans Largest Immigration Raid Of The Year; Here’s What You Need To Know
7) ICE detainee passes away at Miami hospital
8) The Overwhelming Barriers to Successful Immigration Reform
9) Ban on Arizona Sheriff Arpaio workplace raids is lifted: court
10) 2016 NISN Calendar
11) Updates, Please Support NISN!
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our latest newsletter: http://www.immigrantsolidarity.org/Newsletter/Summer16.pdf
6/13: Orlando Massacre Comes After Lawmakers in U.S. Filed More Than 200 Anti-LGBT Bills
In a tweet that went viral after Sunday’s attack on an LGBT nightclub in Florida, ACLU staff attorney Chase Strangio wrote: "The Christian Right has introduced 200 anti-LGBT bills in the last six months and people blaming Islam for this. No." The attack has also renewed calls for lifting what advocates say is a medically unnecessary ban on blood donations from many gay and bisexual men. We speak with Hannah Willard of Equality Florida.
AMY GOODMAN: I wanted to go back to Hannah Willard for a moment, who is with us from Orlando. She is with Equality Florida, a statewide advocacy organization for gay, lesbian, bisexual and transgender rights. Hannah, what are you calling for now?
HANNAH WILLARD: Well, we are calling for a myriad of next steps. Yesterday we moved very quickly to help people gain access to grief counseling resources. Immediately, we called for people to go to their local blood banks and make sure that they were giving blood. We also called for folks to donate if they felt called to do so, through a GoFundMe campaign that raised over a million dollars in one day alone. So many folks were looking for tangible next steps, and we wanted to provide those vehicles for folks to have those avenues to feel like they were standing in solidarity with those that we lost.
But, you know, the best tangible next step that folks can take is to teach our children to treat each other with dignity and respect, to treat those whom they don’t understand with empathy and compassion. That’s how we build a Florida where every single child growing up knows that they are celebrated and valued for exactly who they are, no matter who they love. And that’s the Florida that I want to see.
AMY GOODMAN: Talk about the ban on gay blood donors, Hannah. I know there’s been a major call for blood donations. We saw the lines yesterday in Orlando.
HANNAH WILLARD: Absolutely. Well, if there was ever a time when this ban was seen as the discriminatory and unnecessary thing that it is, it’s now more than ever. This ban has been debunked as medically unnecessary, as discriminatory. There were friends and family of those that we lost who were itching to be able to do something to support those who were still fighting for their lives in the hospital. Every single minute counts when you’re on—when you’re in surgery, open on the table and needing a blood donation. It’s really a shame that the FDA has yet to lift this unnecessary ban. But we also know that, moving forward, these types of tragedies always serve as a catalyst for changes in policy and lead to different actions so that we can move forward to prevent senseless violence like this from ever happening again.
AMY GOODMAN: ACLU staff attorney Chase Strangio tweeted, "The Christian Right has introduced 200 anti-LGBT bills in the last six months and people blaming Islam for this. No. #PulseNightclub." Hannah, your response?
HANNAH WILLARD: It is not up for debate that homophobia and bigotry are still alive and well in Florida and across our country. The LGBTQ community is under attack, plain and simple. We were very tangibly and violently under attack at Pulse nightclub this past weekend, but, of course, over 200 anti-LGBT bills filed here in Florida and in states across the country, legislators are targeting our community where we are most vulnerable, which is often transgender people and especially transgender people of color. I was so thankful that Daniel mentioned intersectionality earlier, because there’s so many reasons why marginalized communities must band together to ensure that we move forward together. We all have the same oppressors. We all have the same opposition. And I’m proud that we work with a diverse intersectional coalition here in Orlando and here in Florida to fight back against our opposition. And certainly we’ll be fighting back in the Legislature and through concrete policy changes in the coming years.
AMY GOODMAN: Daniel Leon-Davis, your final comment, as you continue to gather information about people you knew and didn’t know who are—who are either victims or the loved ones of victims?
DANIEL LEON-DAVIS: Of course. I think the thing that hit me the hardest yesterday was a tweet that basically said, "Our souls have died, and the only thing that remains alive is the Second Amendment." And I think just thinking about the fact that we remain in this cycle, like, it just feels like, at what point—what is the breaking point? Because every single breaking point we felt was going to be it—the Sandy Hooks, right? Like every single breaking point we felt was going to get us there hasn’t. And so, I guess my question is: Is this the breaking point?
AMY GOODMAN: We’re going to break, speaking of breaking points, and we’re going to come back and talk about guns, talk about what happened in another country when a massacre rocked that country, the worst in Australia’s history. And we’re going to continue our discussion with the imam. I want to thank Hannah Willard, and I want to thank, as well, Daniel Leon-Davis of—and we’ll link to your piece, "The Site of the Orlando Shooting Wasn’t Just a Gay Nightclub. It was My Safe Haven." This is Democracy Now! We’ll be back in a minute.
Link the article: http://www.immigrantsolidarity.org/cgi-bin/datacgi/database.cgi?file=Issues&report=SingleArticle&ArticleID=1739
May Day 2016 Immigrant Rights March: Reports from Across the Country
Lee Siu Hin - National Immigrant Solidarity Network
Los Angeles, CA
Sunny Southern California May Day 2016, about thousand people organized by LA May Day Coalition participated in a multi-ethnic unity march, include Latinos, African American, Koreans and Chinese-American union members, as well as white activists, to join the march, demand immigrant rights, vote, union and NO to the Trump. Speakers includes: SEIU, Black Life Matters, KIWA, CARCEN, CHIRLA and so on. It was a powerful day!
Arrests and Injuries in Trade Union Demonstrations in US
Washington, May 2 (Prensa Latina) A dozen arrests and five policemen wounded was the toll of US demonstrations during the International Workers'' Day, especially in the city of Seattle, confirmed today the authorities.
Seattle, considered a bastion of the 'antistablishment' movement in this country, was the scenario of major demands of the labor movement for the rights of workers and immigrants.
When the march increased its character the police tried to disband but many demonstrators replied with stones and even biting, reaching some throwing Molotov cocktails that did not explode, but wounded agents.
Mayor Ed Murray lamented the violent incidents considered absurd, while riot police waited for the traditional event, which last year left 16 arrests and criticism for excessive use of repression.
100 rally for May Day on steps of Salt Lake City and County Building
(Theresa Nielson - Fight Back!) Salt Lake City, UT - On May 1,100 people gathered at the Salt Lake City and County Building to celebrate, table and rally for International Workers Day. The Freedom Road Socialist Organization (FRSO) hosted the event, joined by Students for a Democratic Society, Utah Against Police Brutality, Utah Anti-war Committee, Workers World Party, and Socialist Alternative.
Speeches by local activists and shop floor union leaders focused on labor and immigration rights. Joey Brandin performed songs such as There is Power in a Union and Solidarity Forever. “
As a Mexican immigrant, I can tell you that it is almost impossible to find a job in the state of Utah if you're undocumented. It means that many of these people will find themselves homeless, exploited under the table, or resorting to unconventional means of survival. In Utah, laws like SB 81 are denying undocumented queer people a chance at an affordable post-secondary education and a better future,” said Adrian Romero from Stand for Queer Lives.
Connor Richards from Students for a Democratic Society (SDS), spoke about student solidarity with workers around the world. Then Richards shifted to immigrant rights at home saying, “We need you to support the SDS campaign Education for All, and the cutting of lines 36 through 42 of Senate Bill 81 that prevents state-funded scholarships from being granted to undocumented people.”
Erica Cole, union steward of the American Postal Workers Union, spoke about racist discrimination in employment, “It is ridiculous that if one of my daughters says she is white on a job application the outcome will be vastly different than if she says she is Black.”
Samantha Stott from Utah Against Police Brutality and Cop Watch explained to the crowd, “Speaking not only of the working class, but also those who are not working, those who are dealing with addiction and mental illness who are on the streets. They don’t have the help that they need.”
Carly Haldeman of the Freedom Road Socialist Organization was the final speaker, “I’m calling out to the working class to stand against the fraudulent system we call capitalism. We have to do the hard work! We have to organize!”
Ian Decker, also a member of the Freedom Road Socialist Organization and emcee for the rally, thanked the people who attended the event, and invited them to a Marxism-Leninism Day School on Saturday, July 9.
Joey Brandin then sang the Internationale in solidarity with the workers and oppressed peoples of the world.
Militant march on May Day in Boyle Heights
Demands Legalization for all, dump Trump, stop police killings of Chicano youth
(Fight Back!) Los Angeles, CA - A militant march and rally was held on International Workers Day, May 1 that brought out the Boyle Heights community by the hundreds. Raising the demands of Legalization for all, dump Trump, and stop police killings of Chicanos, the protest was organized by Centro Community Service Organization (Centro CSO).
The march was led by people holding banners reading “Legalization for all.” Two large red flags also led the march. Waving and yelling at the top of their lungs, Garfield High School students carried the two flags, one of Aztlán and the other with the slogan “Liberation not deportation.”
As the militant crowd lined up to march, they were fired up and began chanting, “Chicano power,” “Aqui estamos y no nos vamos, y si nos echán, regresamos!” (We are here! And we’re not leaving! And if they deport us, we’ll be right back!) and “Dump Trump!”
Leading chants on the back of a pickup truck, Sol Márquez kicked off the march by asking the crowd, “Who’s ready to march to the police station and demand justice?” The march started on Soto and Chavez in the heart of Boyle Heights and was greeted by many cheers and waves from the public.
Marchers stopped for a short rally at the LAPD Hollenbeck police station to denounce police killings of Chicano youth.Three families in Boyle Heights and East Los Angeles have fallen victim to police killings in 2016. They all joined the march. The three Chicanos murdered were Edwin Rodriguez killed by LA County sheriffs on Feb. 14; Jose Mendez, killed by LAPD-Hollenbeck Feb. 6; and Arturo Valdez killed by LAPD-Hollenbeck April 10.
In front of LAPD station Jhony Mendez shouted into the microphone, “My little brother Jose Mendez was only 16 years old when LAPD shot and killed him. And to this day LAPD has never shown us their faces, because they know they are in the wrong.”
Estela Rodriguez, shouted and pointed to LAPD, “My 24-year-old son was shot 17 times, all in the back or to the back of his head. It’s time we bring Edwin Rodriguez’s case to justice.”
The spirited march ended with a high energy rally at the historic Mariachi Plaza. Blanca Valdez, long time education activist, talked about her son Arturo being shot in the head by the LAPD.
Isabel Ocampo of Centro CSO talked about the militant spirit of the undocumented youth and the fight for deferred action for all. “It is time undocumented people come out of the shadows and join the fight for legalization,” said Ocampo
Long time Chicano leader Carlos Montes spoke to the crowd, “Self-determination for all Chicanos, political and economic control for our people. Are you down with me? We can keep fighting years for reforms, but real change will come from revolution!” The crowd overwhelmingly agreed by chanting, “Viva la revolucion!” (Long live revolution)”
MECHA de Roosevelt High School and the undocumented students of SURGE, of California State University, Los Angeles (CSULA) urged support for the fight for public education and immigrant rights. Leonardo Vilchis of Union de Vecinos also talked about the fight against evictions and raising rents!
Participants in the event included students and families of Boyle Heights and ELA, members of Centro CSO, Freedom Road Socialist Organization (FRSO), Union de Vecinos, United Electrical, Radio and Machine Workers of America (UE), CSULA SURGE, East Los Angeles College M.E.Ch.A, Roosevelt High School M.E.Ch.A, Garfield High School M.E.Ch.A, GABRIELA Los Angeles, Anakbayan Los Angeles, The Farabundo Martí National Liberation Front (FMLN) of Los Angeles, Assoc. of Ex Braceros, local rank and file Teamsters from UPS, the MORENA party of Mexico, , Human Rights Alliance for Child Refugees, Serve the People, and two different chapters of the Brown Berets.
Sol Márquez concluded the rally stating, “We thank all of you who were present today demanding justice for all Chicanos killed by LAPD and LA sheriffs. And we thank our Black brothers and sisters who have fought back against their own national oppression at the hands of the state – and their movement is only growing. We must unite since our interests are the same: Liberation now, freedom now! And let us also never forget that women hold up half the sky!”
Link the article: http://www.immigrantsolidarity.org/cgi-bin/datacgi/database.cgi?file=Issues&report=SingleArticle&ArticleID=1728
Full report with photos: http://www.ImmigrantSolidarity.org/MayDay2016/
2016 National Immigrant Solidarity Network Calendar
For 2016, we’ll continue organize different activist events to support immigrant worker communities
2) June-October: Immigrant Heath Justice and Cancer Discussion
- Los Angeles, CA
- In conjunction with e-TeamMed Foundation, bi-monthly meetings focus on health issues, health support and heath justice.
To Join the Meetup, Please Sign-In to the MeetUp Group:
3) October: Immigrant Rights Teach-In
- Los Angeles, CA
- Topics: Immigrant detention and deportation, upcoming November U.S. Presidential election impact on immigrant rights.
4) December: immigrant rights conference
- Los Angeles, CA
- A one-day conference includes workshops, performances. Topic includes: post-election analysis, immigration detention and deportation, labor rights, heath care.
5/10: Private Prison CEOs ‘Pleased’ Their Earnings Soared From Keeping Immigrant Kids In Detention
Ester Yu-Hsi Lee – Think Progress
During separate conference calls to talk about earnings reports, two of the country’s largest for-profit private prisons indicated that they saw their profits soar from holding immigrant mothers and children in detention centers across the country.
Revenues increased during the first quarter of 2016 for both the Corrections Corp. of America and GEO Group, executives told shareholders on conference calls.
CCA saw a revenue of $447.4 million, a 5 percent increase from last year’s first quarter. The company’s press release attributed much of that increase to a federal contract with the Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) agency.
“We are pleased with our first quarter financial performance, which exceeded our first quarter guidance…” CCA chief executive officer Damon Hininger said in a press release. “Our financial performance was driven primarily by stronger than anticipated demand from our federal partners, most notably Immigration and Customs Enforcement.”
The statement went on to say that the increase in profits was “primarily attributable” to its contract with the South Texas Family Residential Center. Located in Dilley, Texas, that detention center primarily houses Central American mothers and children who fled violence and poverty in their home countries and are now waiting to come before an immigration judge who will determine whether they get to stay in the U.S. or get deported back. The facility has a 2,400-bed capacity.
Similarly, the GEO Group reported a 17 percent increase, or $136 million, from the previous year, in part because of a 626-bed expansion at the Karnes residential center, another family immigration detention center located in Texas.
Immigration advocates say that both the Karnes facility and the Dilley facility are plagued with ongoing human rights issues that often go unaddressed — and, because they hold children, they have been likened to “baby jails.” At Karnes, some immigrant mothers and children were allegedly kept in a dark medical infirmary which acted as a solitary confinement cell. One advocate compared the Dilley facility to her time in a Japanese internment camp.
“It’s sickening to hear CCA and GEO brag about their profitable quarter to shareholders,” Cristina Parker, immigration programs director at Grassroots Leadership, said in a press release. “That money is made off the suffering of mothers and children who came to the U.S. for refuge.”
Because of a “bed quota,” the federal government has required anywhere between 30,000 and 34,000 beds be provided on a daily basis to detain immigrants so that they would show up to their court proceedings. The contract with private prison companies costs taxpayers roughly $160 per day.
Link to the article: http://www.immigrantsolidarity.org/cgi-bin/datacgi/database.cgi?file=Issues&report=SingleArticle&ArticleID=1731
4/27: CAPAC Members React to New DOJ Rules for Chinese Espionage Cases
Benjamin Chou - The Congressional Asian Pacific American Caucus (CAPAC)
Washington, D.C. – The New York Times reported yesterday that the U.S. Department of Justice (DOJ) issued new rules to require an extra level of oversight when investigating cases of espionage. These new rules come after several high-profile cases in which Chinese American scientists – including Sherry Chen and Dr. Xiaoxing Xi – were wrongfully accused and arrested for alleged espionage only to have those charges later dropped. In November 2015, Congressional Asian Pacific American Caucus (CAPAC) Chair Rep. Judy Chu (CA-27) and Reps. Ted Lieu (CA-33) and Michael Honda (CA-17), along with 39 other Members of Congress, sent a letter to Attorney General Loretta Lynch calling for an independent investigation into these cases. A second letter was sent later that month to Commerce Secretary Penny Pritzker requesting a fair and judicious review of Ms. Sherry Chen’s case. CAPAC Members also met with Attorney General Lynch to raise their concerns over what appears to be an ongoing pattern and practice of Asian Americans being singled out by federal law enforcement and prosecutors. Reps. Chu, Honda, and Lieu, released the following statements:
Congresswoman Judy Chu (CA-27), CAPAC Chair:
“Wrongful accusations of espionage should not be a pattern of practice in our country. The cases of Sherry Chen and Dr. Xiaoxing Xi are appalling. Two prominent scientists, who are U.S. citizens, were publicly humiliated and had their lives turned upside down simply because they were emailing while being Chinese American. Their charges were dropped, but only after their reputations were shattered. Further, their arrests sent a chilling message to other Asian American scientists that they, too, could be next. That is why I welcome the new rules by the Department of Justice as a positive first step in the right direction. These extra levels of scrutiny are clearly necessary to avert other false charges against American citizens. The Congressional Asian Pacific American Caucus will remain vigilant to prevent such wrongful accusations in the future, and we will seek justice for those who are already victims.”
Congressman Mike Honda (CA-17), CAPAC Chair Emeritus:
“For too long, Americans have been accused of espionage by our government on the basis of their heritage, not any finding of fact,” said Honda. “Today, the Justice Department took a good first step to making certain that never happens again. However, too many have still been hurt by these cases in the past. Along with my colleagues, it is critical for us to make certain that the Department of Justice appoints an independent panel to investigate these potential miscarriages of justice."
Congressman Ted Lieu (CA-33):
“I am pleased that the Department of Justice has heard the calls of Members of Congress and implemented a policy change to provide critical oversight for national security cases. The pattern of wrongfully arresting and indicting Asian Americans and Pacific Islanders on flimsy espionage allegations has painted a concerning picture of targeting based on race and national origin, and it is clear that these cases need to be handled differently. I thank Attorney General Lynch for taking action and look forward to being briefed on the changes by the Department of Justice to evaluate whether further steps are needed.”
Rep. Michael Honda, in his role as the Ranking Member of the Commerce, Justice and Science Appropriations Subcommittee, advocated for a change in the behavior of the Justice Department when questioning Federal Bureau of Investigation Director Comey earlier this year about the two accused scientists. Rep. Judy Chu, in her role as a Member of the Judiciary Committee, also questioned FBI Director Comey and Attorney General Loretta Lynch on these matters.
The Congressional Asian Pacific American Caucus (CAPAC) is comprised of Members of Congress of Asian and Pacific Islander descent and Members who have a strong dedication to promoting the well-being of the Asian American and Pacific Islander (AAPI) community. Currently chaired by Congresswoman Judy Chu, CAPAC has been addressing the needs of the AAPI community in all areas of American life since it was founded in 1994.
Link to the article: http://www.immigrantsolidarity.org/cgi-bin/datacgi/database.cgi?file=Issues&report=SingleArticle&ArticleID=1727
4/25: Immigrants Are Dying In Detention While ICE Ignores Its Own Medical Standards
5/2: Ban on Arizona Sheriff Arpaio workplace raids is lifted: court
5/2: ICE detainee passes away at Miami hospital
5/13: ICE Plans Largest Immigration Raid Of The Year; Here’s What You Need To Know
5/13: Obama administration plans new raids that would deport Central American children
5/25: The Overwhelming Barriers to Successful Immigration Reform (1)
5/25: The Overwhelming Barriers to Successful Immigration Reform (2)
6/1: AP Exclusive: Children's asylum approvals vary by US region
6/2: ICE detainee passes away in Louisiana hospital
6/10: Is White House leaking warnings of deportation raids to ‘terrorize’ immigrant communities?
Immigrant Resources on Detention and Deportation
Immigrants Shape California: New "Access to Justice" Laws
ICE custody program and its budget
Refugee Appropriations Docs & Resources
Immigration Bond: How to Get Your Money Back (1)
Immigration Bond: How to Get Your Money Back (2)
Face Sheet: Immigration Detention--Questions and Answers (Dec, 2008) by: http://www.thepoliticsofimmigration.org
Thanks for GREAT works from Detention Watch Network (DWN) to compiled the following information, please visit DWN website: http://www.detentionwatchnetwork.org
ICE's Enforcement Agenda
Deal fact sheet on detention
Deal fact sheet on border
Raids to Deportation-A Community Resource Kit
- Know Your Rights in the Community (English,
Your Rights in Detention
Community Safety Plan
to Deportation Map
to Deportation Policy Map
More on Immigration Resource Page
Useful Handouts and Know Your Immigrant Rights When Marches
Immigrant Marches / Marchas de los Inmigrantes
Immigrants and their supporters are participating in marches all over the country to protest proposed national legislation and to seek justice for immigrants. The materials available here provide important information about the rights and risks involved for anyone who is planning to participate in the ongoing marches.
If government agents question you, it is important to understand your rights. You should be careful in the way you speak when approached by the police, FBI, or INS. If you give answers, they can be used against you in a criminal, immigration, or civil case.
The ACLU's publications below provide effective and useful guidance in several languages for many situations. The brochures apprise you of your legal rights, recommend how to preserve those rights, and provide guidance on how to interact with officials.
Know Your Rights When Encountering Law Enforcement
| Conozca Sus Derechos Frente A Los Agentes Del Orden Público
ACLU of Massachusetts - Your Rights And Responsibilities If You Are Contacted By The Authorities English | Spanish | Chinese
ACLU of Massachusetts - What to do if stopped and questioned about your immigration status on the street, the subway, or the bus
| Que hacer si Usted es interrogado en el tren o autobus acerca de su estatus inmigratorio
ACLU of South Carolina - How To Deal With A 287(g)
| Como Lidiar Con Una 287(g)
ACLU of Southern California - What to Do If Immigration Agents or Police Stop You While on Foot, in Your Car, or Come to Your Home
| Qué Hacer Si Agentes de Inmigración o la Policía lo Paran Mientras Va Caminando, lo Detienen en su Auto o Vienen a su Hogar
ACLU of Washington - Brochure for Iraqis: What to Do If the FBI or Police Contact You for Questioning English | Arabic
ACLU of Washington - Your Rights at Checkpoints at Ferry Terminals
| Sus Derechos en Puestos de Control en las Terminales de Transbordadores
LABOR / FREE SPEECH
Immigrant Protests - What Every Worker Should Know:
| Manifestaciones de los Inmigrantes - Lo Que Todo Trabajador Debe Saber
ACLU of Florida Brochure - The Rights of Protesters
| Los Derechos de los Manifestantes
Washington State - Student Walkouts and Political Speech at School
| Huelgas Estudiantiles y Expresión Política en las Escuelas
California Students: Public School Walk-outs and Free Speech
| Estudiantes de California: Marchas o Huelgas y La Libertad de Expresión en las Escuelas Públicas
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