from Vamos Juntos
The Berks County Detention Center, known officially as the Berks County Residential Center, is a prison for immigrant families, where children as young as two-weeks-old have been incarcerated. The PA Department of Human Services (“PA DHS”) is responsible for erroneously licensing the facility to operate, despite their mission to “provide and promote safety and permanency for children and youth at risk of abuse, neglect and delinquency.” Berks is currently operating in direct violation of the license according to Pennsylvania law. DHS Secretary Ted Dallas needs to immediately issue an Emergency Removal Order so the families can be released.
Incarceration of families simply put, is immoral. Families have suffered trauma in order to arrive to the U.S. only to be met with more abuse at the hands of our government. Families detained in the Berks County Detention Center have reported verbal, labor and sexual abuse from staff, have suffered from medical neglect, and are now having their due process rights violated by ICE, which has begun to deport families before they are allowed sufficient time to find legal counsel….
continue reading at Vamos Juntos
by Salvador Hernandez and Adolfo Flores, BuzzFeed, 2/25/17
Churches across the US are fighting back against the Trump administration’s mandate to ramp up deportations with new sanctuary practices of their own, using private homes in their congregations as shelter and potentially creating a modern-day underground railroad to ferry undocumented immigrants from house to house or into Canada.
Church leaders from California to Illinois and New York told BuzzFeed News they’re willing to take their sanctuary operations for undocumented immigrants underground should federal immigration authorities, emboldened by Trump’s recent directives to take a harder line on deportations, ignore precedent and raid their campuses.
“We’re willing to take that risk because it is our call to justice, and this is how we live our faith,” Rev. Justo Gonzalez II, pastor of Pilgrim St. Luke’s in Buffalo, told BuzzFeed News. He leads one of the churches that has reached out to an organization in Canada to possibly take in undocumented families….
continue reading at BuzzFeed
email from Avaaz, 1/28/17
People are being pulled off planes and pushed into detention centers in airports across the US today — legal visa holders, visitors, refugees, even the green card holding spouses of American citizens!
And we are fighting back.
People are gathering at your airport to protest this inhumane and racist treatment. Let’s join them and add strength to this protest. Showing up in the terminal now can be the beginning of a national movement that endures and wins. Here’s the Facebook link for the protest near you:
Philadelphia International Airport, Terminal A-West, International Arrivals at 2pm tomorrow, Jan 29
Check this link for any updates to the time or location
This is not an approved action. And that means people might get arrested and non-citizens might face extra threats. There will be many more chances to get involved after this, and this protest might not be right for all of us.
For those who can, make your way to the protest in the link above. Also, the resistance movement needs lawyers to help represent those detained. If you, or someone you know, fits the bill please fill out the form here:
This is last minute, and risky, but the faster we mobilize, the faster the courts, Congress and Trump feel the heat of a massive public outcry.
Trump’s Order Blocks Immigrants at Airports (New York Times)
US-bound migrants blocked from flying to JFK airport (The Guardian)
Trump executive order: Refugees detained at US airports (BBC News)
by Doug Muder, The Daily Sift, 11/23/15
Six things ordinary people can do to restore sanity.
One of the most difficult experiences of democracy is to watch your country going crazy, and feel responsible. In a dictatorship you could just zone out: The Powers That Be will do what they do, and your opinion doesn’t matter anyway. Your neighbors, your friends, your co-workers — their opinions don’t matter either, so there’s no point in arguing with them, or even letting them know you disagree. You might as well just binge-watch something light on TV, and wait for the wave to pass.
In a democracy it’s different: We are the wave. Politicians really do respond to certain kinds of public opinion, sometimes to our shame. So, for example, my Democratic governor (Maggie Hassan of New Hampshire, who I have voted for, given money to, and was planning to support for the Senate) called for a halt on admitting Syrian refugees. (She later reduced it to a “pause“, “until intelligence and defense officials can assure that the process for vetting all refugees is as strong as possible to ensure public safety.” But the damage was done: Any governor who wants to come out against refugees can claim bipartisan support.) My representative (Annie Kuster of NH-2, who I have also voted for and given money to) voted Yes on the American Security Against Foreign Enemies Act, which at a minimum would delay any new refugee resettlements by 2 or 3 months, and might snafu the process altogether.  (Check your representative’s vote here.)
If my side has been characterized by politicians timidly letting the panic sweep them away, on the other side it’s been bedlam. Ben Carson is openly dehumanizing refugees with metaphors about “rabid dogs”. Donald Trump is talking about closing mosques, because “we’re going to have no choice”. He has advocated forcing American Muslims to register with the government, so that they can be tracked in a database. Marco Rubio expanded Trump’s proposal to call for shutting down “anyplace where radicals are being inspired”. Ted Cruz and Jeb Bush want a religious test for refugees: We should accept Christians, but not Muslims. John Kasich wants to create a government agency to promote “Judeo-Christian values” around the world. 
Chris Christie says we shouldn’t even let in little kids….
continue reading and follow links at The Daily Sift