New address: 24 Farnsworth Street, Boston, MA 02210-1409.
General Assembly 2012 Event 425
Speakers: Marisa Franco, Pablo Alvarado
Don’t know where to start? Learn from National Day Laborer Organizing Network (NDLON) the fundamentals of putting together a campaign that builds a group, wins demands, and improves conditions for the members of your community.
PABLO: If those who are sitting over there could join us, that would be really wonderful. We're in that circle. I don't know [INAUDIBLE]. I don't remember the reason why we have [INAUDIBLE]. Because it was harmony. And he said, no. We're communal. So we're communal.
So thank you for joining us this morning. And we're going to do things a little bit unusual in this workshop. So I want to make sure that everybody comes to the circle. We're going to make it really fun.
This is the third day of worship. Right? Are you tired? Yeah. We're going to make it a little different, fun. So this morning, we're supposed to talk about pulling together our campaign and the different elements of our [? companion. ?] The issue that we picked to share some of the work that we've been doing is essentially the age of migration. So I want to make sure that people come into the circle.
MALE SPEAKER: You want us to expand the circle?
PABLO: Yeah. There's more chairs here.
MALE SPEAKER: Everybody in.
PABLO: Everybody in. Nobody stays out. We're communal. So the issue that we picked to share some of the campaign work that we've been doing is age of migration. Now, we all know the way the campaign in the past ten years is we expect immigration reform to happen in Washington, DC.
But it hasn't worked out. Has it?
PABLO: No. OK. So it's failed. It's failed to pass. We failed to pass a legislation. It might be we failed to build the liturgy of effective communities. So we're what we're going to do here is we're going to reflect that.
Immigration reform doesn't haven't to take place in Washington, DC. There are many things. There are many campaigns that are taking place at the local level in your own municipality. So the idea is for you to see what are the different options in terms of engaging and participating in campaigns.
So we're going to do an exercise that will provide us with the greater picture, the big picture of what the struggle around immigration reform is. And right after that, we're going to get into a very specific effort that we're undertaking nationally. And that is to change the detainer in localities.
And [INAUDIBLE] is going to come in and explain to us what a detainer is. And we also have Hacinta. We have Carlos here, because they are part of [INAUDIBLE] as well. So right after that, Marisa—raise your hand Marisa—[INAUDIBLE]. Marisa is going to come and explain to us the basic concepts of a campaign, which are?
MARISA: Tactics, target, timeline. Tactics, target, timeline.
PABLO: Tactic, target, and timeline. OK. The three basic concepts. Then [INAUDIBLE] is going come back to talk about a campaign that took place in Washington, DC. And what happened in Washington, DC, really fast. What's going on over there?
SARAHI: We just got the jail to not turn people over to ICE who don't fit a certain criteria.
PABLO: Common sense! And when did that happen?
SARAHI: Last month.
PABLO: Last month. So that's the idea. That you go back and you do this. [INAUDIBLE]. OK. But before, we're going to make it fun, and we know it is the third day.
OK. We're going to stand up. And close in a circle. Close the circle. Stand up. Come on. OK. Can you close the circle?
MARISA: OK. So we want to make sure everybody's in the circle. So stand or move forward, just make sure everybody's in. This is an exercise that everybody can participate in. So we're going to—how many people speak Spanish?
OK. You're going to help me. Yes. I need your help. OK. So what the game is, is it's going to be a race. It's a race. And the objective is, so we're going to have—you all are going to be the starters of the race.
So you're going to have a cat. And you're going to have the dog. OK. So what, what the objective is, is this team—Paulo's team is every other person. Right.
So you're going to pass the object all around the circle. And you're going to do it as fast as you can. This team is going to be going this way. Right. And so one's going to be going this way. And one's going to be going this way.
And whoever gets this object back to the original starting point first wins.
MALE SPEAKER: You got to skip the person next to you.
MARISA: You got to skip the person next to you. Does that make sense? Now, this is where
MARISA: Edie comes in. There is a process of how this object will make its way around the circle. So this is a dog. So I'm going to say it in English, and Edie's going to say it in Spanish. So I'm going to say, this a dog.
MARISA: And this is--
MALE SPEAKER: A cat.
MARISA: A cat. So this is a cat.
MARISA: So everybody, let's practice saying it. [SPANISH].
MARISA: Ready. So what's going to happen is let's pretend here—so what's going to happen is—let's say I'm Pablo right now and I'm passing it to Roger. So I say [SPANISH]. And you hold it, and then, you say, [SPANISH].
MARISA: So a cat. [SPANISH]. I confirm it. And then that's when—so sometimes people are going to get excited and say [INAUDIBLE]. No. You got to go [SPANISH].
MARISA: [SPANISH]. And that's when it goes. Makes sense? Let's practice. Thank you, Edie. All right. Practice.
FEMALE SPEAKER: [SPANISH].
MALE SPEAKER: [SPANISH].
MARISA: OK. Got it? Was that a good practice? Yeah, give it back. All right. Any questions? So this team is saying [SPANISH]. This is a cat. [SPANISH].
Right. [SPANISH]. Right. OK. So this one's for real. So we're going to see who's going to win. The dogs. [SPANISH]. OK. [INAUDIBLE]. Go.
[GAME PROCEEDS IN SPANISH]
MARISA: [SPANISH]. Who won? [SPANISH]. The dogs won. [SPANISH].
PABLO: OK. [SPANISH]. You awake now? OK. So I need 10 volunteers to come over here.
PABLO: [SPANISH]. 10 volunteers. One. One more. OK. Now I need 10 over here. So everybody else, you're going to be the observers. OK. So everybody else, you have to have your pen ready because you're going to write everything that looks interesting to you. Only the observers.
OK. Starting from comments. Whatever you see that you think is interesting, write it down. Then you're going to come back and share it. OK.
So this is a puzzle that you have to put together. OK. So. Yes. So the first three minutes, you can't talk. OK. Just try to put it together. Ready. Let's go. You can't talk.
PABLO: You're talking.
No cheating. OK. Stop now. It's OK to talk now.
PABLO: [INAUDIBLE]. OK.
Stay right there. I want you to take a look at the images and describe what you see there.
MALE SPEAKER: A car in the middle of [INAUDIBLE].
PABLO: OK. In a different direction. OK.
FEMALE SPEAKER: Everybody wants to [INAUDIBLE] in totally different directions.
FEMALE SPEAKER: Everybody wants reform. Both sides—listen. Both sides want reform, but they want it different.
PABLO: What's the difference?
FEMALE SPEAKER: This side is very much anti-immigration. They want to make the laws more abusive. And this side is looking for a humane solution to a very complicated, messed up system.
PABLO: So can you describe the difference between the images on both ends?
FEMALE SPEAKER: This side is very angry.
MALE SPEAKER: This side is angry.
MALE SPEAKER: But there are valid things on either side. Secure communities. Employee sanctions. Then worker centers. The pro-immigrant movement is larger. The other side's smaller.
PABLO: Anything else?
FEMALE SPEAKER: [INAUDIBLE] circle. [INAUDIBLE]. So people being arrested here could also be at that end over there. Those people before their arrested. So it could almost be a circle. Right?
FEMALE SPEAKER: To me, if you look at the other side there are groups pulling on rows. It's not just individuals. They're working with others. And over here, you have a lot of different individuals.
MALE SPEAKER: In the middle there's a lot of people sitting around watching TV.
PABLO: Is that a minority or the majority? OK. So we're going to sit down and we're going to give the observers a chance to come and take a look at a look at the images. Observers, come on.
Ready to comment, to share?
FEMALE SPEAKER: This side represents a much more diverse group [INAUDIBLE].
PABLO: So remember the contrast is exclusion versus inclusion. So our fight has, as I mentioned in the beginning, has been focused only in Washington, DC. And the idea is that inclusion can take place—it doesn't have to come through policy in Washington, DC, at local levels.
I want you to take a look at the ropes, and tell me what that means on both sides.
FEMALE SPEAKER: It's like a tug of war. So you have opposing forces, the mobs.
MALE SPEAKER: A lot of the ropes seem to represent the tools and things that the people are trying to use to accomplish [INAUDIBLE].
FEMALE SPEAKER: I think it shows how complex the whole issue is, and how difficult it is to solve. Because the car, immigration movement, is trying to get some place, but it can't get any place, because it's being pulled in multiple directions by all the different issues and ideas.
MALE SPEAKER: [INAUDIBLE].
PABLO: They get more media coverage, right?
MALE SPEAKER: [INAUDIBLE]. Total lack of compromise.
PABLO: Total lack of compromise.
FEMALE SPEAKER: In the middle, there seems to be [INAUDIBLE].
PABLO: So the idea isn't where we are. What we're saying is that other [INAUDIBLE] have different ways [INAUDIBLE] solution at the local level. You can see it in Arizona. But our side has also come [INAUDIBLE].
And the reason why it's in all directions, [INAUDIBLE]. Those forces cannot come together. So anything else? It's a very complex issue, right? Yes. OK.
MALE SPEAKER: So at the moment, it gets [INAUDIBLE]. But if we add more forces than the left side's supposed [? to be, ?] more and more [INAUDIBLE] in our directions.
PABLO: Can we move up close to the other side?
MALE SPEAKER: I wouldn't put my energy into that. [INAUDIBLE] people like us.
PABLO: But what about [? the world ?] watching TV here? [INAUDIBLE]. I mentioned at the beginning, that [INAUDIBLE]. So right now there is a moment at which we're approaching the gate, because it's unfolding itself in the [? policies ?] and the state. We have to make sure that they're polices of inclusion [INAUDIBLE].
And I do think that we can bring folks from this side to the other side. And [INAUDIBLE]. But I think one thing is for sure, we're not winning. If you can see that—what's that called. [SPANISH]. [INAUDIBLE]. Yes. Yes.
So that's again you know that it's more leaning towards the other side. And that is because essentially they are kind of winning at this momment. And we need to turn this tide. We need to turn it the other way. OK.
That's right. Could be. [SPANISH]. OK. So you've seen the dilemma. So the idea is that we're going to see the detainer as an initiative for inclusion and things that you can actually do in your own communities. . So I'm going to have [INAUDIBLE] to come in.
SARAHI: We actually have some amazing actresses, one who actually left to go to the bathroom. So I guess I'm going to step in. So Elena and Gabby.
Hm. What is this?
FEMALE SPEAKER: This is the ICE pyramid.
SARAHI: The ICE pyramid? What?
FEMALE SPEAKER: Yeah. Immigration Customs Enforcement Pyramid.
SARAHI: The Immigration and Customs Enforcement Pyramid?
FEMALE SPEAKER: [INAUDIBLE].
SARAHI: Actually, I don't really get it. So what's this?
FEMALE SPEAKER: That right there, my friend, Maybe secure communities. SCOM.
SARAHI: That's SCOM, secure communities? What's that?
FEMALE SPEAKER: SCOM. Never heard of it. It's a program that's all over the country right now. So every time people go to jail their fingerprints get sent over to ICE.
FEMALE SPEAKER: And what is here is the 287(g) program that means that if you are stopped and you're driving undocumented you will be processed for deportation the day you get arrested?
SARAHI: And what's this last water bottle then?
FEMALE SPEAKER: That's CAP, Criminal Alien Program, one of the oldest ICE programs that's been around and one of the first placements into the ICE program.
SARAHI: I want to really take out the 287(g) program, because there's been a lot of stops in my community. So how about I take this one out and you guys take the other two out?
FEMALE SPEAKER: No, No. No. I can take one out, and right now we're working on SCOM. So we can take that one out.
SARAHI: There's still two that are left, so how are we going to take them all out at the same time?
SARAHI: Oh, wait. SCOM just came back. What's another way we can make this entire deportation pyramid fall apart?
FEMALE SPEAKER: People say we can take CAP out. So we can try to take CAP out.
FEMALE SPEAKER: Or 287(g) out.
FEMALE SPEAKER: So we have CAP. We have 287(g) out maybe.
SARAHI: No. Wait. So what if they all come back though.
FEMALE SPEAKER: They always get us back.
SARAHI: OK. So how about we pull this out? It all falls down. And this is the ICE container, the immigration detainer. So let's give it up for Elena and for Gabby.
So that was just a little dramatic interpretation of the immigration deportation structure and pyramid. So there are so many different kinds of deportation programs. There's the Criminal Alien Program. There's the Secure Communities program. There's the 287(g) program.
But all of them rely on an immigration detainer. The immigration detainer is essentially the lynchpin of all of these deportation programs. So more specifically what that means is that it's a request to local law enforcement to hold someone for an extra 48 hours than they normally would, so that they can come and pick them up so that they take them into their custody.
So it turns out that this little guy is completely voluntary. There's nothing forcing local jails and local police departments across the country to do that. It's simply a courtesy request to hold someone for those additional 48 hours. But this little guy is the difference between someone going back to their family and someone being deported, and that's huge.
So that's why we've been targeting this guy. The federal government says that secure communities is mandatory. That's there's nothing we can do about it. That those fingerprints are going to be forwarded to immigration and customs enforcement whether we like it or not.
So fine. We acknowledge that we've lost that battle in terms of stopping fingerprints from going to ICE. But you can't—the deportation system doesn't function if people are not being held in jail, if ICE can't come and pick them up. So that's why now we're focusing on the back end of the process, this immigration detainer, and letting law enforcement and jails across the country know that they have a decision to make.
Are they going to be accomplices to this deportation pyramid, to this deportation pipeline that's disappearing our family members, our friends, and workers? Or are they going to stand on the right side, or stand on the side of love and take this immigration detainer out of the equation and have people stay with their families and in other ways restore trust? So that's in a nutshell why we are targeting this immigration detainer, why there are campaigns across the country urging local officials and cities to take a stand to make the right choice.
Are there any quick clarifying questions before Marisa jumps into the fundamentals of a campaign?
MALE SPEAKER: What are the other two water bottles? One was the secure communities.
SARAHI: Yeah. One of those was the Secure Communities Program. The other was the Criminal Alien Program, the oldest of them all. And the other was the 287(g) program.
And we won't get into specifics of exactly what they do. But in other words, they use jails, they use local law enforcement to do the dirty work of immigration enforcement. So they intervene and try to get people through the jails through this immigration detainer.
MALE SPEAKER: And which part was optional, did you say, was discretionary?
SARAHI: This, the request from ICE. So a local law enforcement or a jail can essentially say, no, we're not going to hold this person for an extra 48 hours. The charges were dropped, or they posted bail. So they're able to walk out and go back to their families like everyone else. We're going to have one criminal justice system, not a two-tiered criminal justice system.
So the reason that we can do these campaigns, that there's great opportunity for local organizing is that this is completely voluntary and it's totally in the hands of local law enforcement and the jail to decide whether they're going to hold someone or not.
FEMALE SPEAKER: I was under the impression that there's some legislation to make it not optional, to make it mandatory. I hope that's wrong.
SARAHI: I have not heard of legislation to make it mandatory, but I don't know if others have. I have not heard about it. And it's basically a very basic constitutional principle that the federal can't commandeer the resources of local governments to do their work.
FEMALE SPEAKER: [INAUDIBLE] clarification in order to add that those extra 48 hours your local government has to pay for it. My local government says, well, no because it's too much. How much [INAUDIBLE] per person.
SARAHI: We're going to take two more questions and then Marisa is going to jump in.
MALE SPEAKER: Could you repeat her answer, because it was not on mic?
SARAHI: So she just actually added that those 48 hours are at a cost to local governments and they also incur the liability. But of course, there's also the human cost. Families being separated and also public safety, the fact that people are not going to call the police if they perceive them as doing immigration's job.
MALE SPEAKER: I have a question.
MALE SPEAKER: I'm beginning to understand what you're saying. This detention takes place not because they're illegal immigrants, but for some other reason what the local law enforcement is doing. But then they can hold them because—I think It's kind of a complicated question.
SARAHI: So that's good. Do you want to jump in?
FEMALE SPEAKER: Can you repeat the question for the people who couldn't hear?
HACINTA: I think essentially the question is how does an immigration detainer—we call them hold requests, because we people hear detainer they sometimes think it's obligatory or something to do with the criminal justice system. But it is, like [INAUDIBLE] was saying, just a request.
So the way it works is once someone gets caught up in the criminal justice system, they're arrested, there are different ways—we showed the different water bottles, that someone can trigger a hold request. There can be an ICE agent going inside of a jail saying, hold on, Gabby looks a little suspect. She doesn't look like she's from here. Or it can be because her fingerprints were taken and it sent a leak to the federal government that you had some sort of previous immigration history. Either of those work.
The thing about hold requests is that they're not based on any sort of real probable cause. So they don't have to have any proof. Simply being Latino or simply having an accent can be enough to get the hold request. And then that's when the local law enforcement agency has to decide will I keep this person longer based on that suspicion? Will I pay to make sure that someone else comes to investigate? So at that point, they don't have proof. They don't really know what's going on. They're just paying because of racial profiling.
SARAHI: Thanks, Hacinta. And final question.
FEMALE SPEAKER: Yeah. Will ICE try and find the person, or do they just give up if they've been released from jail?
SARAHI: So in some cases where these progressive policies have been enacted, ICE have changed their tactics to try to get around the policies so ICE will go knock on people's doors or try to catch people when they're showing up to their court hearings. So yeah, ICE still can go and try and find the person.
But it's much harder for them to do that for 400,000 people. It takes a lot more resources on ICE's end, and the reality is that they're not going to be able to grab everyone. And it also just makes it very clear that local law enforcement is not going to do ICE's dirty work. So with that, I want to turn it over to Marisa.
MARISA: OK. OK. How's everybody doing? Good. It's a little bit complicated, right? Sometimes. The thing with it is it's essentially a way, what ICE has done through the federal deportation programs, at its very essence, they have multiplied their force. They have multiplied their force, and they have multiple their capacity. And so, that's the basic fundamental things.
So the strategy when you try to kick the chairs, you're trying to make that more difficult. You're trying to make it to where they can't be delegating and outsourcing and essentially multiplying their capacity to separate families to detain, deport, and criminalize. That's the basic thing.
So what we're going to do now is to get into a little bit about how do we actually make that happen. What are the ways that we can do this?
Yesterday, we had a workshop on right to remain. We had Hacinta and Rico—I don't know where he is now—but they presented on some of the ways we've been able to do that on a very local level. This, in the same way, is a type of campaign that you can do in your local town and can actually have some ability to help knock that little pyramid down.
So the very basic way we're going to get into it is in a campaign, once you have a clear, you understand what the problem is and you have a sense of how you want to solve it. In this case, what we're going to focus on is detainers, ICE holds. We want to break ICE's hold on our community.
So once we know that, the basic things we have to be able to answer and move out on is where are our tactics? What's our timeline? And who's our target? So what we're going to do first is get a little bit into what are each of these things. Give each other's examples, some criteria, right.
There's ways of doing that that have been successful, that all of us have probably heard of. And probably something you have all experimented with but haven't gotten that successfully. So just to get into some of that.
But then we're going to do some small groups, or pair share, where you can brainstorm essentially on this particular issue. Some tactics, a timeline, hooks, who would be targets in your area. So tactics. [SPANISH]. What is a tactic?
FEMALE SPEAKER: A method.
MARISA: So a method.
FEMALE SPEAKER: A strategy.
MARISA: A strategy.
FEMALE SPEAKER: An action step.
MARISA: So some people are saying strategy and tactic are different. Who would like to explain what the difference is?
BLAKE: It's macro and micro. It's the difference between macro and micro. I guess the strategy is the overall what we want to do as far as getting rid of the hold requests. A tactic would be what are the individual pieces that go into making that happen?
MALE SPEAKER: Well, the tactic might be something you enable after you have a strategy or a target. I might say it's sort of like the how. The tactic means how, and then the strategy would be what.
MALE SPEAKER: I think of tactics as action steps.
MARISA: Great. I think you got it.
MALE SPEAKER: Also, a strategy would be to take the hill. The tactic would be to use machine guns and troops.
MARISA: OK. So I think we collectively got it. Right. So I think--
MARISA: Blake. Blake was like the macro and the micro. So in some ways, we kind of laid out that this is not prescriptive. But for the purposes of the workshop, we kind of laid out what the strategy was. We want as a strategy to take down or debilitate this deportation dragnet. We want to attack the mechanism that allows for ICE to be able to outsource and delegate their dirty work to local police.
And attacking ICE holds and the detainer policies is a way to do that. And that's a strategy. So tactic, the activity, the method, the how, the what, right. So let's think of some examples. What are some examples of tactics of activities?
FEMALE SPEAKER: Go see the mayor of the city or county.
MARISA: So go visit--
FEMALE SPEAKER: City council.
MARISA: City council. Elected officials.
MALE SPEAKER: Start a petition campaign.
MARISA: Start a petition campaign. Perfect.
FEMALE SPEAKER: Boycott.
MALE SPEAKER: Public education outreach. Make people aware.
MARISA: Public education outreach. Making people aware.
FEMALE SPEAKER: Go to local law enforcement. Talk to the heads there.
MARISA: Visit folks. Yes. Delegation visits.
MALE SPEAKER: I just wanted to point out that in our—this is Nebraska—there's one police department that doesn't want to be involved with ICE. And they decided on their own just to absent themselves. Another large police department that would need to be forced to get out of the program by the city council, and depending on which you think you need, it's a whole different set of tactics.
MARISA: What would be some examples of tactics in that scenario?
MALE SPEAKER: Well, in the situation, Lincoln, Nebraska, which has absented itself, effectively you have a progressive police chief who has been talking with his colleagues around the country saying it costs too much and this is stupid for us to put ourselves in conflict with our immigrant community.
Whereas the police chief in Omaha, he needs to have the city council tell him to stop doing it. And that's a political organizing process.
MALE SPEAKER: Well, in the old civil rights movement, they had a tactic of fill the jails.
FEMALE SPEAKER: Could you give him the mic?
MALE SPEAKER: In the old civil rights movement they had a tactic of fill the jails. So we could get ourselves arrested and all say we're from Honduras and speak Spanish or whatever.
MALE SPEAKER: Under the idea that there is strength in numbers, I would say to build the coalitions of other like-minded group in our area who might want to join us in this activity. Rather than try and go alone.
MARISA: OK. So those are some examples of tactics. Right. There are some that are a little bit bigger. Like the boycott is sometimes used as a strategy. Or the coalition is sometimes as a strategy, but it is an activity as well.
Just really quickly, what are important criteria to take into consideration when developing tactics. So what makes good tactics.
MALE SPEAKER: Will it work?
MALE SPEAKER: We need to know if in fact your community is doing this or not. And if they are doing it, how the decision-making process brought them to that. Otherwise, you can't play it [INAUDIBLE].
MARISA: So being able to know if your community is doing it or not, being informed of what the practice is. Otherwise, you can't plan a good tactic.
FEMALE SPEAKER: Fundamentally, it's action. It's something you actually, concretely do.
MARISA: So can we pull it off? Very basic, very important. A mistake I think probably all of us have probably made at some point.
FEMALE SPEAKER: So you need to think about blow back. Are there going to be side effects that are going to be worse if you do a particular tactic?
MARISA: So will there be blow back?
MALE SPEAKER: Think about tactics that move us to achieve our immediate goal, but also build the movement so we can knock all the water bottles out eventually.
MARISA: Right. So is it making us stronger?
MALE SPEAKER: Right. So tactics will build our strategy.
MARISA: Right. And in some ways, that connects to what kind of blow back and what would be the impact. Right? Does this help us get bigger? Or will it isolate us? Something to consider.
So we'll take a couple more, and then we're going to move forward.
FEMALE SPEAKER: What's it going to cost and who's going to pay for it?
MARISA: What's it going to cost? And who's going to pay for it?
MALE SPEAKER: I like a tactic that's within my constituency's experience. So for a lot of congregations, maybe a prayer in, pray in, that we all hold. And then outside the enemy's experience, something that shakes them up.
MARISA: Yes. It's one of the major tenants of Rules for Radicals by Saul Alinsky. So something that is within the experience of your constituency or your community and is outside the experience of your opposition. So I'll take this through and keep moving.
FEMALE SPEAKER: I think you really need to understand who your community is so that you have an understanding—I've heard bits and pieces of that—so you have an understanding of whether the tactic that you choose is going be successful or not. So the man from Nebraska, the tactics that he would choose in Lincoln are going to be different from the tactics that he would choose in Omaha, because he educated himself first to find out what's going to be effective in that particular community.
MARISA: OK. So let's go on to target. Yes. Let's go to target. So target. Very basic definition of a target. Who can provide that?
MARISA: How do we know what result we want? So we say who's the target of your campaign? What does that mean?
MALE SPEAKER: What's the specific goal? What's the outcome that you're trying to get?
MALE SPEAKER: People that are affected.
MARISA: People that are affected.
MALE SPEAKER: I think a person or persons that can change the policy. So if we want the county government to no longer cooperate with ICE, who at the county government can make that decision? Comptroller? The county executive?
MARISA: So very specific. The person or persons that can meet your demand. Sometimes, it's not a policy, whatever your demand is. So you're primary target is the person or persons who have the ability to meet the demand.
MALE SPEAKER: That's true, but you may need to get the general public behind it.
MARISA: Right. But the general public—so in this case, let's just take the detainer, the ICE hold, right, there is a person who has, through authority of a position, a power they're elected or they're an appointed person, who actually gets to make decisions about that.
General public would be audience. We want to be sure to educate people. And their opinion matters. But the person who has the direct decision-making power to make that decision is your target.
MALE SPEAKER: Then there has to be a financial benefit.
MARISA: Sometimes. Sometimes not.
MALE SPEAKER: Or could be a social benefit.
MALE SPEAKER: But financial is the strongest benefit.
MARISA: In some cases. I've seen in some cases where it's not. It just depends on where you are. But then, there's this thing—just to quickly introduce—have people heard of this concept of a secondary target?
MALE SPEAKER: I mean, in World War II bombing campaigns, bombardiers would get a list of main targets and then if it was cloudy or for some reason they couldn't hit the main targets, they would have a list of secondary targets so they wouldn't waste all that fuel and not drop any bombs.
FEMALE SPEAKER: A secondary target is someone or some institution that can help you access your primary target.
MARISA: Got it. So influences the decision-maker. My favorite example, how many people heard about Boycott the Bell and the campaign of the Coalition of Immokalee Workers? How many people have heard of that? Boycott Taco Bell?
Couple years ago, this organization in Southern Florida farm workers, who mostly pick tomatoes, they successfully negotiated a contract by launching a national, probably international campaign, on Taco Bell.
Who was their primary target? It wasn't Taco Bell.
MALE SPEAKER: The grower.
MARISA: The grower was their target. For years, and years, and years, and years, they tried to organize and compel this person to meet their demands. Couldn't do it. Eventually made the decision, well, who does our grower care about? Because he don't really care about us.
Well, Taco Bell was one of their main—they sold to Taco Bell. So then they went after Taco Bell, and Taco Bell indirectly. So Taco Bell was a secondary target. So sometimes, you can do that. It depends on the situation. And as you can see in that situation, it made sense.
That was a target that they could actually publicly go after. A grower is much more difficult.
So then we'll do timing. So when we say timing, I think it's two different elements. There's the element of just how your campaign goes. So when you first start, and you're hey, we're going to go visit. Hey, we're going to investigate. Hey, we want to demonstrate the problem.
And then you start engaging your target. And then, the target is going to respond and probably going to say, oh no. Sorry. Can't do it. Not going to do it. Who are you? I don't really care.
And then you start to escalate. So there's a basic flow of time. So that's timeline. So sometimes, when you first start, people are like, we need to go in and barge in and da, da, da. And it's like the very first step. It's probably not the right timing.
But then on the other side, sometimes people never want to escalate. And you keep doing the same thing, the same thing, the same thing, you get the same results. So, timeline. The other thing is what events, or what are hooks or handles that you can use to be able to push your campaign forward. So thinking of timing, timeline, timing.
So one example, like someone talked about the importance of finance. If there's an argument to be made around the fiscal, why would we be holding people if it's going to cost us. We don't want our money to go towards that. Budget timing. Timing.
Talking about Joe Arpaio and going to pay one of the worst jails in the country a visit while the country's watching, waiting for the Supreme Court to make a decision on SB 1070, timing. Right. OK. So pretty clear.
So what we're going to do is we're going to split into—OK. What we're going to do is—timing right? Timing. It's my weak point. So we're going to do is just gather with the folks around you. Maybe three or four folks, and just have some conversation about thinking about this detainer ICE hold and how do we break ICE's hold.
And think about a local example. And obviously you're going to be sitting with folks who are from different places. So everybody kind of add your piece, depending on what could work in your community. But brainstorm what would be some tactics, creative, how creative, how relevant, how actionable, right.
Thinking of all the criteria we've thought about. What are some ideas of tactics that you can do where you live, congregation members, et cetera, to be able to break ICE's hold? What are some potential hooks around timing?
What would be good timing? And then who would be targets that you can think of? And who would be secondary targets that you can think of?
So just a little brainstorm to actually put this more into practice. So we'll take a few minutes to allow you to talk about it.
MARISA: If you can hear me, clap once. If you can hear me, clap twice. If you can hear me, say hey.
MARISA: Cool. I just made that up right now. OK. So we're just going to do popcorn style. Popcorn meaning we're not going to go group by group. We're going to return to each of these concepts and just hear a couple different responses. I want to make sure to hear from each group.
You know what was a couple of things that came up. It doesn't have to be a full report. We still have a few other things that we want to share with you all before we close out. So for tactics, what are some of the examples or ideas that came out?
FEMALE SPEAKER: Find allies. Find allies.
MARISA: Find allies.
MALE SPEAKER: Our counties are hurting. So target the cost.
MARISA: Target the cost.
MALE SPEAKER: We had to say find allies. But I've heard you have a website that might be able in my particular geography to tell me Latino groups who are active that we could work with. So I was told I could go to your website. Is that correct?
SARAHI: Yeah. We're going to put it. Actually, it's the Interfaith Immigration Coalition website that has that.
MARISA: So the Interfaith Immigration Coalition website has partners or local organizations all across the country that you can connect with.
FEMALE SPEAKER: We [INAUDIBLE] that we have already done in New Orleans. One was a 24-hour prayer vigil outside of the Sheriff's office with pictures of people who had actually be put in deportation [INAUDIBLE] from that jail with immigration hold requests. And the other that we did was a legal tactic of filing writs of habeas to get people out who had been held for more than the constitutional limit. So we could actually rip people out of the jail and use them as examples of the justice of what was happening.
MARISA: OK. Any last other examples?
MALE SPEAKER: Well, we talked about when we had a demonstration against an atrocity. We needed people out for—encourage people to talk to their friends and tell them about it. And tell them why [INAUDIBLE].
MARISA: OK. Really quickly.
MALE SPEAKER: Real quick. Is the National Lawyers Guild at all helpful in this? I know they've been helpful in Occupy. And we've used them in Occupy. So are they helpful in this particular issue in terms of giving us legal resources?
SARAHI: Yeah. We've actually partnered with the National Immigration Project, which is part of the National Lawyer's Guild. And if you go to the Interfaith Immigration Coalition website, there's a tool kit and a number of other resources there. But really encourage folks to visit that web page. And we of course don't expect people to walk out of experts coming out of this workshop, but we really encourage to connect with those local partners through that website
MARISA: OK. We're going to jump to target, but a couple of things. So tactics. Some of this, like find allies. If we had more time, I would push us to think more specifically. Well, what's the activity. That's more of the objective, but what's the activity to be able find allies.
Or to target the cost. One of the ideas, just as an example of a tactic to do this is what does it cost to hold people? And create, get fake money and take the barrels and do a very sensible, nice, direct action in front of the decision-makers office. And here's the barrels of money that's spent detaining people voluntarily for ICE. This is what it costs to do ICE's dirty work. You can target the cost.
See, so sometimes, you got to be a little more specific in terms. Some of these were a little bit more of an objective. If we had more time, we'd get into it and brainstorm that. OK. Let's go to target.
So any ideas on this one. What came up in this discussion on target.
Sheriffs. Elected officials.
FEMALE SPEAKER: Police chiefs.
MARISA: Police chiefs.
MARISA: City council.
MALE SPEAKER: County supervisor.
MARISA: County supervisor.
FEMALE SPEAKER: Mayor.
MALE SPEAKER: County councils.
MARISA: Mayors. County councils.
MALE SPEAKER: Sheriffs.
MALE SPEAKER: Uninterested general public.
MARISA: Uninterested general public. The public, for target again. What's a target?
MARISA: Decision-makers. So the general public would be more of audience that influences the decision-makers. Or sometimes it's the folks who are impacted. So the folks have to be directly—people who are directly impacted need to be directly involved in guiding how this is fought and how it's won. Right.
MALE SPEAKER: Well, as a secondary target, I would go after farmers who are affected for our purposes of crop.
MARISA: Yep. Great.
MALE SPEAKER: Crop development.
MARISA: So just to repeat it. A secondary target, farmers who are impacted but have economic interests to be able to produce their crops.
MALE SPEAKER: A secondary target is other faith communities.
MARISA: Secondary target, other faith communities.
FEMALE SPEAKER: Secondary target is campaign financiers, so people who are paying money to get your local officials elected, people who are donating to their campaigns.
MARISA: So another idea is campaign financiers, so the people who are actually donating or contributing to elected officials.
OK. Let's go to timing. Let's go. So what are some ideas around timing?
FEMALE SPEAKER: Campaign time. Election time.
MARISA: Election time.
MALE SPEAKER: Budget time.
MALE SPEAKER: After a big announcement of a policy like that.
MARISA: After a big announcement.
FEMALE SPEAKER: I think the biggest question about timeline is are you starting the work now so that when the time comes to act you will have the forces you need. I think the big thing about timeline, one of the most important things when times of action are required, you will have done the work for some time before that, so that you will have people ready to act. Because sometimes we take action and we don't see people, and then we're really disappointed. So it really means the timeline starts now in my opinion.
MARISA: That's right. Another quick one. So Father's Day, Mother's Day. These issues are about families being able to be together. These are days when all of us think about family. Right. So it's also like different holidays. Anything else? OK.
MALE SPEAKER: Yeah, I got one.
MALE SPEAKER: If there's an instance of police brutality, people being held in these jails where there's a lot of brutality then that issue gets highlighted at that point.
MARISA: Yep. So being able to hook onto incidents of police brutality, or if there's reports, information coming out about conditions inside of detention centers, or prisons, or jails. That was an example that's been used in New Orleans with the NOPD and the parish county jail that's been named as one of the worst, and that's definitely been a hook and something that they've been able to use.
OK. So I'm going to pass it back to [INAUDIBLE] actually going to give a case study. We talked about a victory in DC. She's going to break it down.
SARAHI: A lot of this stuff that you guys just mentioned are reflected in different arts of the campaign that I worked on in Washington, DC. So just to give a little bit of the political context. As folks mentioned, depending where you live, what's your political context, that will dictate who's your target, and what kind of tactics you use, and the timing, et cetera.
So in Washington, DC, we actually have a pretty progressive local city council, majority African American. And when it comes to issues of rights, DC has been mostly on the right side of history. So we have same sex marriage and a number of other progressive policies in Washington, DC.
Also, Washington, DC, in the 1980s, was a sanctuary city, a lot of El Salvadoran refugees came to Washington, DC. And we've just had this legacy of welcoming immigrants into the district. So in terms of our target—well, finally, of course, our goal was to prevent deportation to Washington, DC, and to push back against the threat of the secure communities deportation program.
So in terms of targets, we actually decided to take a two-prong strategy. We decided to target our mayor, because he's pretty progressive. And he was just elected, and he had really done outreach to the Latino vote. And we also decided to target our council.
The other reason why we decided to target the mayor is because he could issue an executive order administratively directing the Department of Corrections to change a policy, and it would be great to have a faster victory and not have to go through the long and legislative process that we have in Washington, DC.
So we did that. And we were pursuing both at the same time, even though we didn't tell the mayor that we were pursuing the council as well. And why do you think we didn't tell the mayor we were pursuing the council?
MALE SPEAKER: He'd get off the hook.
SARAHI: He'd get off the hook. Of course, he'd be like why do I have to do something if the council's going to do it? So the mayor decided to issue an executive order, but unfortunately, in last minute negotiations, of course the toughest piece of that executive order, which was limiting the immigration detainer was dropped.
The chief of police fought tooth and nail, and it got dropped. But the upside of that was there was definitely a victory in the community and there were other provisions in the executive order that were new. Like now, detainees in our jail need to get a consent form, a notification in their language before ICE even tries to interview them, and the consent form literally says do you want to be interviewed by ICE, yes or no.
So that was new. And so that was a victory. And that's going to be a theme throughout that you might have an incredibly awesome goal, but it's also really hard to reach. And it's important to have midterm, short-term victories along the way. This was an over two-year campaign. And there was number of key victories along way before we even got to passing this bill.
So once the mayor dropped the detainer provision, we were already very, very easily able to pivot to our council because we'd been talking about this issue for a while. And said, hey, the mayor's order was great, but it's not going to really be effective in fighting against SCOM.
So there were our two main targets. And from then on out, it was like over a year-long campaign just targeting the council. And the nitty gritty of what can be a legislative process. Right. In terms of timing, we used SV 1070's passage as a way of energizing politicians to come out and speak against the issue.
So as I mentioned, DC's a progressive place, so we said, hey, you got to stand up and say that you're not Arizona. So when we actually launched the campaign over two years ago, it was with chance of saying, we're not Arizona, and our politicians saying that DC is going to stand on the right side of history. And it gave them the political cover to do it at that time.
The next key point as I already mentioned in terms of timing was the mayor's order. So we passed this amazing mayor's order. Everyone feels great. Huge celebration with the mayor, and then we turn to the council and say actually that wasn't enough though.
And then of course, if you're running a legislative campaign where you're trying to pass a bill, you have to be aware of what are key moments in that legislative calendar. So the budget hearings, or the oversight hearings. We had a police department oversight hearing, a department of corrections oversight hearing. So we made sure that folks directly impacted testified about what was going on.
We took on a campaign of someone who called the police for help and ended up in deportation proceedings. And he was incredibly involved in the campaign and pushing for an individual end to his deportation but also a structural change to what had caused that in the first place.
We also—so key legislative calendar days. Marisa mentioned Mother's Day, Father's Day. Domestic Violence Awareness Month was really big for us. The Domestic Violence Coalition was a really big partner, so we did a number of events during DV awareness month that talking about specifically the impacts of SCOM on women and victims of crime.
And then, finally SCOM activation. I think your comment about starting earlier than sooner is right on. So when SCOM was going to be activated in DC, and we found out five days before that happened, we actually used the urgency of that moment to push our council to introduce emergency legislation. And instead of waiting an additional month for our bill to get passed, it got immediately passed unanimously.
So using what was a terrible situation, to be like you got to do this now, because we've been working on this forever, so that was what kind of tipped the scales for us. And then in terms of tactics, like I said, DC city council is pretty progressive. They came out unanimously against SCOM two years ago. So it was just a matter of keeping this issue front and center and not losing momentum in those two and a half years that it took us to do this work.
So we did press conferences, DV Awareness month, there was a Labor Seder, where the Jewish community wrote letters in support of our bill, delegations to city council members. And when did our council visits, we tried to make the council in some ways a mobilization. So instead of having four people go and visit each of our 13 council members, we try to mobilize over 50 people every time we went there, to kind of make it in some ways a spectacle. We're a small government. So if you have 50 people in city council walking the halls, it's like a big deal.
And we had press. And we had, of course, folks in those separate little groups to be sharing their stories and a number of different folks in the community sharing different perspectives as well. So I mentioned the DV Coalition, the Domestic Violence Coalition. We had Labor backing us up. We had civil rights group backing us up. And that's what really helped move these politicians.
There was also letter writing campaigns, petitions, very kind of basic stuff. And I think that was it. I guess I would just return on the fact that a lot of this stuff can change. Like I said, we had a two-prong strategy. We had to move to a council.
So just being able to be flexible, to take an opportunity when it comes, like the timing piece. You have to seize on that opportunity and be able to be flexible and be relevant as things change. Because they often do a lot.
FEMALE SPEAKER: I'm just curious. Did you happen to use any particular colors, or slogans, or t-shirts, or anything that showed that you were all working together?
SARAHI: Did we use any particular slogans, t-shirts, or colors? You know we could have done a better job of that to be honest. But one of the things that we did do in the launch was the "We Are Not Arizona" chant. And one of the chants that we would say was "Tell me what community looks like. This is what community looks like." Because Secure Communities is making us insecure, and DC is a very diverse place.
FEMALE SPEAKER: How important is it to have a professional activist working with you? And is there a time or a trigger when it's a good idea to call one of these organizations and say we need help.
SARAHI: Well, as I mentioned I encourage folks to visit the Interfaith Immigration Coalition website. If you haven't written it down, we'll definitely write it down. Oh, there it is actually. It's important to reach out to local organizations. It's important that these campaigns be led by directly impacted folks, and it's important to have a coalition, right. But the coalition is taking it's lead from those folks.
So definitely check that website out, and you can get a sense of who locally is already working on this.
FEMALE SPEAKER: I guess one thing that me being from Tennessee and seeing what was going on in DC, that they were really good at in the campaign, it's really communications, putting it out there in the social media. People from all over the country were watching the city council meetings through live stream. So that really pushed, I think, awareness and for other communities to be inspired to continue these campaigns.
And those that are trying to start. They can see how campaigns are going and those that have already done campaigns can help others.
SARAHI: Thanks. Other quick questions before we wrap up. I think we're almost out of time. So we're going to be around if you guys have questions. But I want to hand it over to Pablo to close us out.
PABLO: Thank you, Sarahi. So, if you stick with us for a few more minutes. It's kind of unfortunate that we've been pushing for legalization for all of these years. But at the end, what we're left with is fighting against criminalization.
And I know that the conversation about legalizing people will come back. Whether it's after the re-election or whatever. That's to be seen. But meanwhile, we have to make sure that people are not criminalized. That we decriminalize people. And this is one of the ways to actually do it.
So I want to share—and by the way, if the Supreme Court on Monday decides that states do have some business to do in the enforcement of immigration law, that's going to be bad, but it will also provide opportunities for us. That means that we can go to progressive places and push for affirmative legislation that includes people rather than exclude them as we see in the images.
OK. So you got to think about this as you go back to your place. And I wanted to share with you three additional things that are happening, that my organization is involved in. One is that right now we're doing very detailed research about who gives money to [INAUDIBLE]. And the boycott is going to be more targeted now to those people that have invested enough time.
And there may be some national targets. And we're going to need the unions. The unions are cool. They're going to help us out when we identify that national target.
But I think that we want to be very effective. There are businesses that are doing this, I think that we can shut them down. I think if those are businesses that are patronized by Latinos here in this state and outside. So that's happening. I think we're going to have that perhaps in the next six weeks, maximum.
The other thing that's happening is that we're doing for the first time, see people when we talk about immigration on our side, in my view, has made this mistake, is that when we talk about immigration we go to US citizens. And sometimes we consult with police officers on how we talk about immigration. And then we come back, and then instead of helping us, it pushes us in a different direction.
So we're going to be doing a very expansive poll, actually. We're going to interview 500 undocumented people here in Maricopa County, Los Angelos, in Cook County, and hopefully in Atlanta. And the idea is that we're going to be asking them, and they're going to be along the goals with that, with the polling, there will be some focus groups.
So we're going to ask people if you were a victim of a crime would you report it? Do you know somebody who has been victimized and hasn't been able to call the police? So this poll will provide for the first time, through rigorous polling, good data of how this giving the power to local police creates distance of the security. It's not good for public safety. Let's not say for human rights, civil rights.
So we're going to be sharing that data. And hopefully, when we have it, you can actually use it as well, when you go to talk to your own police chiefs and your own city council. The other thing that's happening in a minute if we can talk about the bus tour.
And then we'll wrap it up with the observers. Because we're going to go back to the people who were observing the exercise. And we're going to wrap it up with that.
MARISA: Very quickly, this summer, we are hitting the road. We are starting in Phoenix, Arizona at the end of July. And we are getting on a bus to try to take us on a road from pain to human rights. There are folks who are directly impacted by the federal deportation programs, folks who are tired. People are sick and tired of having to hide in the shadows and live in fear and are looking to get on a bus to tell their story and shine a light on the injustice, and shine a light on the contributions that immigrants and families make, immigrant families, and workers, and students make to the country every day.
So we're starting in Arizona, and we're going to be traveling to some of the places that have really been the leaders in the wrong direction. Places that have passed Arizona style legislation, places that have been quick to do ICE's job. And we're going to pay them a visit and really demonstrate that we're not going to live in fear.
And really looking to build from the leadership and the example of students, because students have, the Dream Act students and Dream Act eligible youth have actually in many ways generated the real political power. And we're looking to really bridge and make that be workers, make that be families, and make that be whole communities that are saying we're no longer going to live in fear and force the dilemma on friends and foes alike if people will comply with hate.
So at the end of this July, heading into the DNC in North Carolina. We'll be finishing up at the DNC. So please look out for more information.
PABLO: And I know that we're a few minutes over. But I think we've kept you entertained. Right? So let's have two observers to tell us what they saw during the process to close it. Who wants to do it?
FEMALE SPEAKER: Let me get me get back to my notes. I'm sorry. Where did they go? Previous page.
One thing I noticed was that some people were kind of trying to find their way into the conversation. There was a lot of people crowded around the pieces and they had a hard time fitting in. So it seems to me that it's helpful when everybody makes sure that everybody has a role to play.
Pretty soon, some people started looking at what others were doing to see if they could get ideas. And then eventually they saw that there was room for collaboration. I guess that's all I have to add right now.
MALE SPEAKER: With the two different groups, neither group had all the pieces. So eventually, they figured it out and started to coming together.
MALE SPEAKER: Yeah, into one group.
PABLO: It was fun. Right. Essentially, if we had more time, we would go into more detail about these type of dynamics happen when you have a campaign going. So that was the idea of doing this exercise that way. OK. So one last comment and we'll close it.
FEMALE SPEAKER: I just have one quick comment. Those who were doing it were not allowed to talk to each other. And I think sometimes we can't talk to each other because we don't speak the same language, but we can still find ways to communicate.
PABLO: And one of the players was cheating.
FEMALE SPEAKER: One question. Where do you get one of those?
PABLO: Where do you get one of those? Talk to us. Yeah. Talk to us. And we'll see. What we can do is we can give you an electronic copy, and you can make copies of it. All right. So thank you so much. Thank you so much.
For more information contact socialjustice @ uua.org.
This work is made possible by the generosity of individual donors and congregations.
Please consider making a donation today.
Last updated on Tuesday, April 29, 2014.
Sidebar Content, Page Navigation
More Ways to Search
Donate to Support This Program and the Ongoing Work of the UUA
Read or subscribe to UUA.org Updates for the latest additions to our site.
Learn more about the Beliefs & Principles of Unitarian Universalism, or read our online magazine, UU World, for features on today's Unitarian Universalists. Visit an online UU church, or find a congregation near you.