Wednesday, August 13, 2008

Pottsville, Iowa Raids

POSTVILLE, IOWA - 18JULY08 - Maria Rosala Mejia Marroquin and Anacleta Tajtaj, Guatemalan immigrants, were arrested in an immigration raid at the Agriprocessors meatpacking plant in Postville on May 12. The raid was the largest workplace raid in a single worksite in recent history. Both were released to care for their children, but now have to wear ankle bracelets to monitor their movements. They and 46 other women cannot work or travel, and have been waiting for weeks for a hearing which would result in her deportation. Most have husbands or brothers now in Federal prison, forced to plead guilty to misusing a Social Security number, as a result of the raid. Luz Maria Hernandez works in St. Bridget's Catholic Church, trying to help the families of those arrested. The Agriprocessors meatpacking plant sits on the outskirts of Postville, a tiny town of 2000 inhabitants. New Latino businesses have taken over storefronts in Postville, but as a result of the raid, most stores and restaurants are empty now.
David Bacon
For more articles and images on immigration, see

Coming in September, 2008, from Beacon Press:
Illegal People -- How Globalization Creates Migration and Criminalizes Immigrants

See also the photodocumentary on indigenous migration to the US
Communities Without Borders (Cornell University/ILR Press, 2006)

See also The Children of NAFTA, Labor Wars on the U.S./Mexico Border (University of California, 2004)

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