Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) conducts massive raids in communities, where heavily armed officers outnumber unarmed people who are either in their homes or places of work. Often times, these raids are witnessed by citizen children of the immigrants. Other times, raids happen while the children are away, such as at school, and no provisions are made to care for them—they are abandoned. Raids tear apart the entire community but no one is affected more than the children.
In the United States, people charged with a crime have guaranteed rights to an attorney, to a speedy trial and to have the legal process and any possible ramifications of their pleas explained to them. Undocumented immigrants have committed a civil offense, not criminal, and yet are not guaranteed these basic rights. Once apprehended by ICE, their case can be processed as quickly as a day or could take months. In the meantime, their families are not notified if and when they are moved or deported. Due to our enforcement-only policies and the resulting large number of detainees, the federal government is increasingly contracting out to to private prisons and county jails. Thus, people, whose only legal violation is being in the country without documentation, are being housed with violent criminals and yet are not guaranteed the same protections.
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Last updated on Tuesday, October 11, 2011.
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Jailed Without Justice: Immigration Detention in the USA, by Amnesty International (pdf, 56 pages)
Dignity, Not Detention - a campaign by Detention Watch Network
Restoring the Right to Due Process: A Toolkit for Immigrant Rights Activists, by Detention Watch Network (PDF, 20 pages)
The Effects of U.S. Deportation Policies on Immigrant Families and Communities (PDF, 26 pages)
Preparing for and Responding to Raids
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