Friday, December 20, 2019

ICE To Collect Data From Adults Picking Up Migrant Kids From Shelters:

Under a secret plan by Trump aide Stephen Miller, federal agents could gather information to target migrants for deportation, The Washington Post reports.

Immigration and Customs Enforcement agents will be able to collect fingerprints and other information from adults who come to get unaccompanied migrant children from shelters under a new plan designed by President Donald Trump’s senior immigration adviser, Stephen Miller, according to The Washington Post
This month the White House planned to have ICE agents embedded in the Department of Health and Human Services’ Office of Refugee Resettlement, which runs government shelters for unaccompanied children who cross the border into the U.S. ― but senior officials at HHS rejected the plan, the Post reported, citing unnamed current and former administration officials. 
However, HHS officials agreed to let ICE collect fingerprints and other biometric information from adults who came to claim unaccompanied children. If the adults were deemed “ineligible” to take the child into custody, ICE could use the information to arrest and deport them.   
This appears to skirt laws meant to limit HHS’ refugee program from being used to deport potential sponsors of unaccompanied children and may drive fear among migrants and discourage potential sponsors living in the United States ― often family members ― from coming forward to get the children out of government shelters.
HuffPost reached out to the White House, ICE and HHS for comment but did not immediately receive a response. 

Tuesday, December 17, 2019

Young Latinos Have Strong Preference for Sanders

By Adrian D. Pantoja

In a previous analysis, I noted that Bernie Sanders is a clear favorite among Latino voters in California. A recent study by The Latino Community Foundation shows that young Latinos have an even stronger preference for Sanders, with over two-thirds rating the senator favorably. The favorability gap between Sanders and the other Democratic contenders is significant, yet all are evaluated higher than Donald Trump. Interestingly, the data show a significant gender gap when it comes to Donald Trump.
Latinas rate Trump unfavorably by 83 percent, while male Latinos rate him unfavorably by 69 percent—a 14 point gap. Regrettably, Elizabeth Warren, the top remaining female candidate, has failed to use this to her advantage. In fact, Warren is rated less favorably by Latinas (44 percent favorable) than by Latinos (52 percent favorable). Given the high stakes of the California primary, the failure of key Democratic candidates to reach out to young Latinas may prove to be a strategic mistake.
Moreover, young Latinos are advantaged because they are overwhelmingly U.S.-born citizens. A lack of citizenship has long stymied the growth of the Latino electorate. That barrier is eroding as the balance of power shifts toward younger voters. Capitalizing on their numbers and energy could prove to be decisive in determining the winner of the Democratic presidential primary. Presently, one candidate appears to be doing just that—Bernie Sanders.
Sanders’ lead among young Latinos is due to his policy issues, the establishment of offices in Latino communities, hiring significant numbers of Latino staff and receiving endorsements from influential Latinos. He is offering a blueprint that others should follow for winning young Latino voters and the wider Hispanic electorate.
Adrian D. Pantoja is a Professor of Politics at Pitzer College and Senior Analyst for Latino Decisions.

Thursday, December 12, 2019

U.S. Labor Defends Mexican Labor

HOW LABOR BEAT MEXICO ON TRADE: After weeks of negotiations, Mexico was nearly ready to walk away from the USMCA. The issue: whether the AFL-CIO could send American inspectors into Mexican factories where workers weren't being given their full union rights. But, in the end, Mexico agreed to last-minute concessions that will allow multinational inspection teams to investigate allegations of labor violations, POLITICO's Sabrina Rodriguez and Ian Kullgren report. The new enforcement mechanism was enough to win the endorsement of AFL-CIO President Richard Trumka, marking the first time the federation had endorsed a trade agreement since 2001.
Under the deal, "the U.S. can file a complaint to Mexico if it suspects that a factory is denying its workers their union rights," Rodriguez and Kullgren report. "If Mexico agrees that there is a problem at the factory, the Mexican government has 45 days to solve the problem."
But if Mexico does not mitigate the problem, the U.S. can demand creation of a panel made up of three independent labor experts, one of them American, to investigate the facility. (Mexico will be similarly free to investigate and inspect American factories.)
One big victory for Democrats and labor, Rodriguez and Kullgren write, "is that the U.S. can impose stiff penalties on Mexican factories if they fail to uphold union rights. If a factory has recurring violations, the U.S. can block the goods made there from entering the country." 
Ed. note: 
If this seems a little arrogant- it is. Mexico reformed its labor laws to overcome this particular problem of company unions last Spring under the AMLO government.  But, governments come and go.  This tries to establish free labor unions under any government.  Note: Mexico can also investigate U.S. work sites, That should be interesting for Uber, Amazon, and others.

Wednesday, December 11, 2019

Methodist church’s nativity scene depicts Jesus, Mary and Joseph as separated and caged family

Methodist church’s nativity scene depicts Jesus, Mary and Joseph as separated and caged family: A Christmas nativity display outside a Methodist church in southern California features a separated and caged Holy Family, in direct criticism of inhumane administration policies that have included attacks on refugees and the forcible separation of family.

Tuesday, December 10, 2019

Border Patrol Refuses free Vaccination for Migrants

U.S. Border Officials Refuse Free Flu Vaccine For Migrants

US border officials deny request by doctors to administer free flu vaccine to detained migrants. Common Dreams: “A group of doctors seeking to vaccinate migrants detained by President Donald Trump’s Customs and Border Patrol were denied at the gates of the Chula Vista Border Patrol Station in San Ysidro, San Diego Monday. ‘Refusing to vaccinate is inhumane,’ tweeted Immigrant Families Together director Julie Schwietert Collazo. ‘The agency is willingly putting lives at risk of death.’ It was the latest example of what critics of the administration call the “intentional cruelty” of Trump’s immigration policies. ‘People are needlessly suffering and dying,’ said Dr. Marie DeLuca, one of the physicians who was turned away. ‘You can’t lock people up in inhumane conditions, watch them get sick, and then refuse them access to medical care.’ The doctors were supported by a coalition of immigration advocates, including the groups Doctors for Camp Closures, Families Belong Together, and Never Again Action. Monday’s action marks the beginning of a planned week of action by the doctors and others at Chula Vista. In a statement, Families Belong Together chair Jess Morales Rocketto said that recent reporting from ProPublica on the death from flu and border patrol inaction of an immigrant child in detention gave the protest added urgency. ‘This administration’s cruel immigration agenda is intentionally barring life-saving medical care from children by refusing to provide vaccines during flu season,’ said Rocketto. ‘Earlier this year, as immigration authorities sat by, 16-year-old Carlos Gregorio Hernandez Vasquez died from the flu on the floor of his concrete jail cell.'”

Saturday, December 07, 2019

Capitalism, Imperialism, and Borders - Webinar

The Democratic Socialists of America’s Immigrant Rights Working Group organized a very successful webinar on the topic, No One Is Illegal! Capitalism, Imperialism and Borders on November 21. Hundreds of people registered and about eighty participated.  We were assisted by the national office of DSA. 

For those that missed the webinar live, find the link to the recording here.

 We encourage immigrant rights groups and activists  to share it and also organize discussions around it. The speakers explained the roots and nature of the attack on immigrants and presented a working class strategy for resistance and liberation.

This webinar is the first of several that we will be organizing. The next one will be a version of this one in Spanish. Please stay tuned for details on that one. We are also going to be putting together a webinar on practical tips and models for immigrant rights organizing. 

Many on the first webinar asked for more information from the panelists who joined us. See below for both their bios and publications. Also, to supplement these, we encourage everyone to read, share and discuss the many excellent articles in the DSA’s Fall 2019 Socialist Forum

Harsha Walia is a community organizer and cofounder of No One Is Illegal. She is the author of Undoing Border Imperialism. She’s based in Vancouver, British Columbia in Canada.

Todd Miller is the author of Empire of BordersBorder Patrol Nation. You can read an interview that summarizes his argument on Jacobin. He writes for NACLA among other publications. He’s based in Tucson, Arizona. 

Justin Akers Chacon is the author of No One is Illegal and Radicals in the Barrio. He wrote a recent article on Punto Rojo entitled The Anti-Migrant International. He is an immigrant rights activist in San Diego, California and a co-founder of the Coalition to Close the Concentration Camps.

Jorge Mújica is author of Voces Migrantes: Movimiento 10 de Marzo, a member of DSA, an Organizer with Arise Chicago, and a National Council member of the National Writers Union. He is based in Chicago, Illinois. 

Friday, November 29, 2019

Sanders Releases a Real Immigration Plan !

Sanders on Immigration
By far the most progressive plan of any of the candidates.
Key Points
·       Institute a moratorium on deportations until a thorough audit of past practices and policies is complete.
·       Reinstate and expand DACA and develop a humane policy for those seeking asylum.
·       Completely reshape and reform our immigration enforcement system, including breaking up ICE and CBP and redistributing their functions to their proper authorities.
·       Dismantle cruel and inhumane deportation programs and detention centers and reunite families who have been separated.
·       Live up to our ideals as a nation and welcome refugees and those seeking asylum, including those displaced by climate change.
This country is a nation of immigrants. Other than the native peoples of the Americas, every one of our families came here from somewhere else. Some came by choice, some by necessity, and others in chains. As we have developed as a nation, each of us has contributed to the growth and prosperity of America in our own way. And our nation has been most successful and most true to its ideals when that prosperity has been shared among all of us. In many ways, that is what this campaign is about: building a movement to create an America where everyone shares in the prosperity that they and their ancestors helped create.

Read the plan

Wednesday, November 27, 2019

U.S. Did Not Track the Kids of the Families They Separated !

By ASTRID GALVAN Associated Press

PHOENIX (AP) — The U.S. government separated thousands of families despite knowing it lacked the technology to document and track their whereabouts, according to a report released Wednesday by an internal government watchdog.
The problem resulted in some parents languishing in custody for weeks without knowing the location of their children.
The report by the Department of Homeland Security’s Office of Inspector General found the agency lacked proper systems when Border Patrol agents took children from parents set to be criminally prosecuted for illegal entry.
Most of those separations took place in the spring of 2018, although the Border Patrol conducted a pilot program the previous summer.
The problem meant agents had to delete prior entries documenting families who arrived together and replace them with references to “single adults” and “unaccompanied children.”
The three agencies dealing with the immigrant families also lacked a cohesive way of tracking each other’s work, the report states.
An email Wednesday seeking comment from Homeland Security was not immediately returned.
The widely decried policy of separating families was meant to deter illegal immigration but was shut down by a U.S. judge who ordered the government to reunify the parents and children. President Donald Trump also signed an executive order to end the practice.
In this July 12, 2019, file photo, protesters hold up a sign that reads ‘uncage kids’ during a rally in Lafayette Park near the White House where they were calling for and end to immigrant children’s detention and family separations. (AP Photo/Jon Elswick, File)
More than 5,400 children were taken from their parents from July 1, 2017, to June 26, 2018.
The new report noted that Border Patrol officials knew they lacked the tracking technology months before the widespread practice began and did nothing to address the issue.
It said reunification was chaotic because it was coordinated via email instead of a shared system that could be accessed by the three agencies involved.
In addition, government employees sent sensitive information about immigrant children through unsecured means, and the number of families needing reunification was too high to manage through email, the report found.
The government has addressed some of the issues but not before family separations were ended, according to the report.
The Trump administration has continued other efforts to reduce immigration, forcing over 55,000 asylum-seekers to wait in dangerous Mexican cities while their immigration cases play out, and requiring thousands more to wait before they can even file an asylum claim.

Monday, November 25, 2019

No he ganado un solo caso de asilo”

No he ganado un solo caso de asilo”: el duro proceso buscando refugio en EEUU que retiene a los migrantes en México

Como resultado de las nuevas políticas del presidente Trump, las autoridades rechazan cava vez más solicitudes de refugio sometidas por centroamericanos que huyen de la violencia y pobreza extrema. Así lo afirman abogados entrevistados por Univision Noticias, una demanda y la organización ACLU.

23 NOV 2019 – 10:34 AM EST
La abogada Brenda Luján. Crédito: Isaias Alvarado/ Univision
TIJUANA, México.- La guatemalteca “Rosa” y su hija de 11 años llevan más de cinco meses en un limbo migratorio que las mantiene angustiadas. Solicitaron asilo a Estados Unidos en junio y las devolvieron a México para esperar sus citas en una corte federal de California. Cuando llegó a un albergue en esta ciudad fronteriza, alguien le tradujo lo que redactaron en su proceso y lo que escuchó le bajó la moral.
“Pusieron que yo no tengo miedo de regresar a Guatemala y eso no es cierto”, reclama “Rosa”, sentada en el patio de la Casa del Migrante de Tijuana, el que ha sido su hogar temporal este otoño. “Cruzamos la frontera el 16 de junio y nos regresaron. En la entrevista que me hicieron no me preguntaron por qué salí de mi país, ni por qué iba a Estados Unidos. Nada”, asegura.
“Rosa” ruega que no se publique su nombre, ni se fotografíe su rostro. Tiene mucho miedo. Relata que salió de su país porque pandilleros le pidieron dinero para dejarla trabajar en su salón de belleza. Ella los denunció con la Policía en mayo, pero nadie fue a investigar. Mientras tanto, siguieron las amenazas a través de cartas y llamadas telefónicas. La acosaban hasta cuando salía a comprar al mercado.
“Me dejaban papeles afuera de mi casa exigiendo dinero. Me dio miedo porque a finales de mayo ellos fueron a degollar a una señora a su casa, ella no quiso pagar la extorsión. Tuve miedo y me salí”, contó.

Thursday, November 21, 2019

On the Coup and Repression in Bolivia

Statement on Human Rights Violations in Bolivia

Evo Morales – the democratically elected President of Bolivia from the MAS party (Movimiento al Socialismo, Movement Towards Socialism) – was forced to resign on November 10, in what many observers view as a coup. In the wake of Morales’ resignation, there has been mounting chaos and violence. What is happening in Bolivia is highly undemocratic and we are witnessing some of the worst human rights violations at the hands of the military and the police since the transition to civilian government in the early 1980s. We condemn the violence in the strongest terms, and call on the US and other foreign governments to immediately cease to recognize and provide any support to this regime. We urge the media to do more to document the mounting human rights abuses being committed by the Bolivian state.

On November 10, Morales’ vice president and the heads of both chambers of Congress also resigned in the face of threats of violence against top MAS officials unless they left office. The pressure campaign included the burning of MAS officials’ houses and kidnapping of relatives. This paved the way for the ascension to the presidency of Jeanine Áñez (a conservative Roman Catholic opposition leader from northeastern Bolivia, widely accused of holding racist views) on Tuesday November 12.

The circumstances surrounding the rapid-fire resignations makes Áñez’s assumption of power highly questionable. There are serious doubts about the constitutional legitimacy of her succession. Without the forced resignations by MAS officials, Áñez would not have had even a minimally plausible constitutional path to the presidency, as she was serving as Vice-President of the Senate, a position that is not in the line of presidential succession within the constitution. Additionally, Áñez, whose party received only 4% of the vote in the most recent October 20 election, declared herself President in a Senate session lacking quorum, with MAS senators who make up the legislature’s majority boycotting partly due to fears for their physical safety.

Áñez represents the radical-right sector of the Bolivian opposition, which has taken advantage of the power vacuum created by Morales’ ouster to consolidate control over the state. Áñez appears to have full support of Bolivia’s military and police. Over the course of the last week the military and police have engaged in significant and increasing repression against protests, which have been largely, though not entirely, peaceful. By the night of November 13, La Paz and Cochabamba city center streets were empty of anyone but the police, military, and self-appointed neighborhood militias. There has been ongoing looting, burning of buildings, and violence on the streets and protesters have been met with much repression. In a highly disturbing move, Áñez issued an executive order on November 15 exempting the military from criminal responsibilities related to the use of force. Áñez has said Morales will face prosecution if he returns to Bolivia. And she has also floated the idea of banning the MAS party – which is undoubtedly still Bolivia’s largest and most popular political force – from participation in future elections.

Equally disturbing has been a resurgence of public anti-Indigenous racism over the course of the last week. Shortly after Áñez was declared President, she thrust a massive Bible into the air and proclaimed “The Bible has returned to the palace!” Three days earlier on the day of Morales’ ouster, Luis Fernando Camacho, a far-right Santa Cruz businessman and ally of Áñez, went to the presidential palace and knelt before a Bible placed on top of the Bolivian flag. A pastor accompanying him announced to the press, “The Pachamama will never return to the palace.” Opposition activists burned the wiphala flag (an important symbol of Indigenous identity) on various occasions. These are extremist views that threaten to reverse decades of gains in ethnic and cultural inclusion in Bolivia.

Monday, November 18, 2019

Webinar : No One is Illegal

DSA webinar: No One Is Illegal 
When:             November 21st, 2019, 8:30pm EST, 7:30pm CST; 5:30pm PST
Sponsor:          Immigrant Rights Working Group – Democratic Socialists of America (DSA)

Borders throughout the world have become sites of state violence, racist discrimination, and policing of workers freedom of movement. Governments from the US to Mexico, the EU and Israel to name just a few have militarized their boundaries, policed them with guards, forced migrants to take dangerous routes where they are losing their lives in record numbers, jailed those that survive in concentration camps, and exploited others as cheap labor denied the rights of workers with citizenship. On this webinar, experts on capitalism, climate change, imperialism and migration will explain the systemic roots of population displacement, the nature and function of the new border regime and present a case for working class unity against the oppression and scapegoating of migrants in the U.S. and throughout the world. 


Justin Akers Chacon, author of No One is Illegal and Radicals in the Barrio.

Todd Miller, author of Empire of BordersBorder Patrol Nation, and Storming the Wall.

Harsha Walia, author of Undoing Border Imperialism, cofounder of No One Is Illegal.

Jorge Mújica, author of Voces Migrantes: Movimiento 10 de Marzo, DSA member and Organizer with Arise Chicago, National Council member of the National Writers Union.

Wednesday, November 13, 2019

"This Is a Military Coup”: Bolivian President Evo Morales Resigns After ...



On Tuesday, the Supreme Court finally heard arguments over the future of Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals, or DACA, a program that has kept roughly 700,000 young, unauthorized immigrants in limbo for years.
Here’s what you need to know:
Need a refresher on DACA and Dreamers?
In 2012, President Barack Obama introduced the program, which shields people who were brought to the United States as children from deportation. It was intended as a stopgap measure, and didn’t provide a pathway to citizenship.
But it did allow participants, known as Dreamers, to get work permits, and in some states, including California, to access in-state tuition and legally drive. Dreamers can renew their status in two-year intervals.
Recipients who aren’t veterans have to be enrolled in high school or have a diploma or G.E.D. and cannot — contrary to what President Trump has said — have a serious criminal history.
In 2017, President Trump moved to end the program after nine conservative state attorneys general threatened to sue over it. They said it was an overreach of presidential power. President Trump has been conflicted about the program, and his public statements have reflected that.
editors note.  We should stop saying that the Democrats were as bad as the Republicans on immigration.  They were not.  The House has passed a new Dreamers bill. It languishes in the Senate.