Protect vulnerable immigrants from ICE raids

Today's post is shared in full from Mikki Halpin's awesome newsletter actionnow -- click to subscribe or learn more about Mikki on Twitter.

ICE is conducting raids across the country. They are following school buses to find parents picking up their children. They are setting up speed traps in immigrant neighborhoods as a pretext to find people and deport them. These raids are meant to terrify the immigrant community. (And they have succeeded). ICE is stalking and hunting down anyone they can find for deportation. You need to reach out to your reps and make sure they are working to stop this.  

Today's action: Set up a community defense zone. Mijente has a great how-to organizing packet on your site. Make your community a safe place for people to live. 

Understand the need to keep people safe is as important as fighting ICE through other channels. I was on a conference call earlier this week with Ray Ybarra Maldonado, lawyer for Lupita García de Rayos, just after he had learned she were deported, and he said he is advising his clients to head to churches, especially those associated with the Sanctuary movement. It's unlikely ICE would raid a church, although they are starting to target them as well. This is part of why I have been talking about Sanctuary for so long. We have to keep people safe, first and foremost. Sanctuary isn't magic, but it is important.

Also, find out who is offering Sanctuary near you. Churches are the most likely place. If there isn't a church or other space, then work to create one. If you live somewhere where you don't think there are people at risk (which would be weird, but probably there are areas ICE is not identifying), then donate and support to churches and other places that will need it. This isn't about whether you have an issue with organized religion—these are the places working to help people directly. If you want to know more about Sanctuary and haven't been reading the nl for a long time, this is a good explainer about Sanctuary cities--it ignores faith communities, though. 

If you want to know how organized the hunt for refugees and the undocumented is,try googling for "map of sanctuary cities." Basically all the results on the first page, if you click through, are from anti-immigrant groups targeting those cities and those who live in them. (The Times story above has a good one.) 

Also, find your local immigrant support groups and ask you can help. Show up. Show up in person and say you will do what they need. You want a group like CHIRLA or PuenteAZ or Mijente

Be informed. Like anything else, if you know the facts and the scope of what is happening, you can activate others just by talking about the situation and letting them know they can also make a difference. 

Other things you can do: Reach out to anyone you know (this includes Muslim friends and others at risk, of course), and and offer concrete help. Don't just say "Call me if you need me." That's putting the burden on them. Give them your car keys and tell them that they can take your car if they need to, if that is an option for you. Do the other things we talked about in this previous newsletter. Offer to meet their children at the school bus so they aren't exposed. 

Some previous applicable newsletters
Ways to fight the Muslim ban and support those fighting against it
A passionate plea for action from Porochista Khakpour
More info on Sanctuary cities and states (ignore the map link on this one, I fell into the trap and listed an anti site)

This Salon story has a great list of things to doAnd note it is from November. People knew this would happen.