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Victims and Witnesses Are Made Criminals When State and Local Police Enforce Immigration Laws

June 2, 2010
Ri t a Cote tried to do the right thing and ended up in jail because of it. In February 2009, local police arrived at her home in Tavares, Florida in response to a domestic violence call. Rita’s sister Sonia had called the police, alleging that she’d been assaulted by her boyfriend. Rita wanted to help and translated for her sister, who, by then, was showing visible bruise marks around her neck. The police officers ignored the allegations and instead asked Rita and everyone else in the house for identification. They arrested Rita on supposed immigration charges, even after she produced i .d...

Arizona's Anti-immigrant Law Does Not Reflect Our Common Values

June 2, 2010
By Victoria L ó pez, Immigrants Rights Advocate, ACLU of Arizona On Saturday tens of thousands of people from all over the country gathered in Phoenix to voice their opposition to S.B. 1070 . On the local news later that evening, a mom who participated in the march pushing a stroller with one of her two U.S. citizen children said, "I'm doing this for them. So they know what their country is really about." The Arizona law that passed the state legislature in April criminalizes immigrants who are "unlawfully present" in the United States. This is the most extreme law ever passed by a state to...
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Women's Stake in Fighting Arizona's New Law

June 2, 2010
As the sheriff’s truck followed our van several blocks through Phoenix, I kept thinking what the sight of that vehicle would mean for Silvia or Esperanza or Alejandra or the other women we’d met: Visions of being yanked out of the van and ordered to produce papers. Picturing kids arriving to an empty house. Wondering whether the sheriff would drag you by the hair or slam you against a wall. Having no idea how long you’d be detained, or whether you’d be expelled from the place your ancestors called home. Agonizing whether an older child might have to drop out of school to get a job or care for...
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Child of Peruvian Immigrants Becomes Symbol of Undocumented

June 1, 2010
Here is yet another story I just spotted for the MomsRising blog carnival. Daisy Cuevas, the 7-year-old girl who got to ask First Lady Michelle Obama a question, has become a symbol for undocumented immigrants in the country. Here is the Associated Press story about it. Cuevas, who attends an elementary school in Maryland, recently asked First Lady Michelle Obama if it was true that the president "is taking away everybody that doesn't have papers." The First Lady responded: "Well, that's something that we have to work on, right, to make sure that people can be here with the right kind of...
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Arizona Law an Attack on All Women

May 31, 2010
In addition to the obvious racist and xenophobic implications of the new Arizona immigration law , in addition to the obvious concerns that this unlawful law targets residents based on the hue of their skin and the language on their lips, there is something else that troubles us. SB 1070 is an attack on women – especially mothers, and those who find themselves in situations of domestic violence, sexual assault or workplace discrimination. What was Governor Jan Brewer thinking when she stood for all the world to see and signed this wrong-headed legislation into law? There is so much in SB 1070...
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Working to Keep Immigrant Families Together

May 31, 2010
I know firsthand the struggle and heartbreak immigrant families experience when loved ones are incarcerated. My experience in a U.S. immigration jail led me to dedicate my life to advocating on behalf of this often marginalized community. And while it’s no secret that the U.S. has both the highest number of people in prison and the highest rate of arrests in the world, very little attention is paid to the high number of children who end up alone as a result—and even less to the children of incarcerated immigrants. Without parental guidance and emotional support, children with imprisoned...
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Immigration Enforcement and Family Separation: Unintended Consequences for Children and Families

May 29, 2010
Children of immigrants currently comprise nearly 1 in 4 of all U.S. children. It is estimated that more than 5 million of these children, the majority of whom are native-born U.S. citizens, live in mixed-status families with one or more undocumented parent. While the debate over comprehensive immigration reform has often overlooked these citizen children, inaction on immigration reform and ongoing enforcement measures are having a significant impact on thousands of America’s most vulnerable children. Immigration enforcement activities by U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) and...
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Writings on Human Rights for Moms, Kids, Families & Current Immigration Law Enforcement Practices

May 29, 2010
Welcome to the MomsRising blog carnival about the human and civil rights impacts of current immigration law enforcement practices on children, mothers, and families. Our goal is to facilitate an online conversation on this topic by bringing together the voices of many people together in one online venue. We thank the many bloggers who are contributing original posts to this blog carnival. We are also cross posting, and gathering links from, other eloquent blogs found across the web. Browse through this carnival – you’ll find a wide range of blogs from personal stories to policy analysis, from...
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Letter From Immigrant Mothers in Phoenix

May 29, 2010
Phoenix, Arizona, May 25, 2010 I write on behalf of Latina immigrant mothers in Arizona, to share their experiences under the current anti-immigrant onslaught. I am a sociologist who has conducted research in the Phoenix area for over a decade, and therefore have followed events that affect immigrant families for a while. I have interviewed hundreds of immigrants and have conversed with many more over the years, and I can see that the particular climate of anti-immigrant sentiment we see today is exceptional. On May 2, the weekend before Mother’s Day, a group of Latina immigrant mothers met...

We Need to Dump the Word "Illegal"

May 29, 2010
Cross posted from TruthOut The owner of Mulligans, a watering hole popular with middle-aged white men in Cobb County, Georgia, regularly updates his marquee to comment on current events. Here is what's up today: HELL YEH, ARIZONA. SEND THEM WETBACKS HOME! ANCHOR BABIES & ALL! IF U CAN'T FEED UM DON'T BREED UM! The local news station reporting on the sign bleeped out the offensive term. As they should have, wetback being an ugly racial slur. But there is a word more commonly used and much more damaging to immigrants and Latinos: illegal . We need to stop using it ourselves, and demand that...