A project of the Center for Community Change

annapolis raid

Finally, Some Steps to Hold ICE Accountable

ICE RAIDOn Tuesday, the NY Times published an article about complaints that are being filed against ICE for excessive use of force and brutality during raids conducted in Florida in Novemeber.

“There is a way that these operations should be conducted,” said Jose Rodriguez, a lawyer with the American Civil Liberties Union of Miami-Dade County. “And this is not it.”

At a news conference, Mr. Rodriguez and others said agents had relied on vaguely worded warrants to invade people’s homes and arrest nearly anyone who looked Hispanic. In all, according to the federal agency, 77 illegal immigrants were detained in the operation, and only a handful appear to have been charged with a crime.

In the case involving the accusations of beatings, none of the men have been charged with sex trafficking. Lawyers working with the men said the agents used excessive force: bursting into their home in Homestead about 8:30 p.m., pulling their guns in front of a 4-year-old girl, then forcing all 10 or 11 men inside onto the floor in handcuffs.

This scenario sound eerily familiar to anyone else? Not only are raids systematically denying due process and tearing apart families and communities, they are excessive displays of force and police brutality. Remember my posts about the raid in Annapolis, Maryland earlier this year? This excessive use of SWAT-style force is something that happens over and over when ICE is involved.

Its good to see ICE being held accountable for their actions. The Agency has gone unchecked for too long. Let’s hope this marks a beginning of the end of their absolute power and free reign to bend the rules.

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VIDEO: Postville – There has to be a better way

With recent raids in Maryland, Rhode Island, Colorado, Texas and now Hawaii – we must all remind ourselves what these raids really mean for the communities they target.

It is easy to become de-sensitized by the numbers, the legal justifications and the ICE PR machine that continues to hide the inhumanity that is the real story of the raids.

Watch this video, from CBS, on the Postville aftermath. When you are done, watch it again.

Now, ask yourself, how does this uphold American values? Family values? Community values? I understand that many of you are concerned with the enforcement of the law, but is that law based in humanity, integrity and justice for all?

There has to be a better way.

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Breaking News: 45 People Arrested in Maryland Raid

Earlier today, 45 suspected undocumented workers were detained by ICE and local law enforcement officers throughout Annpolis, Maryland.

The raids, executed simultaneously at the offices of Annapolis Painting Services and 15 private homes owned by the company, were conducted by a force of 125 officials, including 75 federal immigration agents and 50 Anne Arundel County police officers.

The raids targeted employees of Annapolis Painting Services and are part of a much larger anti-immigrant agenda that has been pushed recently in the area.

The County Executive, John Leopold issued an executive order last August, declaring that the county would sever contracts with any business caught employing undocumented immigrants.

Leopold also pulled funding from non-profits that provided services to immigrants without distinguishing between documented and undocumented.

Click here for full article from the Washington Post.

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