Grassroots Groups Blast White House for Escalating Deportations and Detentions

In the lead up to the March For America on 3/21, grassroots groups are speaking out about their frustration with the current state of immigration policy under the Obama administration and the lack of leadership on immigration reform. WHAT: Press conference to express discontent with escalation of deportations and detentions by the Obama Administration. Broken promises are creating an uproar that will have electoral consequences.

WHEN: 12 noon, Monday, March 8, 2010

WHERE: Holeman Lounge, National Press Club, 529 14th St. NW, Washington, DC

WHO: Speakers include:

  • Angelica Salas, executive director, Coalition for Humane Immigrant Rights of Los Angeles
  • Pramila Jayapal, executive director, OneAmerica (Seattle, WA)
  • Artemio Arreola, Mexican-American Coalition for Immigration Reform
  • Brent Wilkes, national executive director, League of United Latin American Citizens
  • Nitza Segui Albino, National Alliance of Latin American and Caribbean Communities
  • Dae Joong Yoon, executive director, Korean Resource Center

WHY: The Obama Administration’s shift in emphasis from “worker raids” to “paper/desk raids” has provided a veneer of civility to immigration enforcement, but the impact on families and communities is equally sinister. Under DHS Secretary Napolitano, U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement removed a record number of immigrants from the country in 2009. Deportations have increased by more than 60% since the Obama Administration took office.

Our communities are uniting to say, “Enough!” At 12 noon, Monday, March 8, grassroots leaders from various organizations from all over the country will hold a press conference to renounce the tactics of the Obama Administration. Our communities supported Barack Obama’s candidacy under the premise he would bring a more humane approach to immigration enforcement. We believed then Sen. Obama when he said:

“But we cannot – and should not – deport 12 million people. That would turn America into something we're not; something we don't want to be. While we work to strengthen our borders, we need a practical solution for the problem of 12 million people who are here without documentation – many of whom have lived and worked here for years.”

But 15 months into his Administration, our communities continue to suffer. Our families continue to be separated. Working men and women whose only crime has been to search for better lives in this country continue to be jailed and deported.

We will no longer sit silently and allow this to continue. We will make our message clear and unequivocal: President Obama, Stop the raids! Enough with the deportations! Comprehensive immigration reform now!