Richard Trumpka: 20/15/2017- AFL-CIO Now
Working people deserve to go to work every day without fear for their safety or being harassed. They deserve to go out the door and make a living without worrying about their lives being upended.
These are sacred tenets people and their unions value.
Hotel workers, farm workers, teachers, taxi drivers, airport, construction and retail workers have been making their voices heard in Los Angeles; Phoenix; Austin, Texas; New York City; Minneapolis, Minnesota; Milwaukee, Wisconsin, and many points in between over the past week. Why? We are defending our neighbors, co-workers and friends who are being swept up in a series of immigration raids. Working people understand in our bones that when the government terrorizes people who are simple living their lives and going to work each day, we all lose. When we allow ourselves to be divided, we are weak, when we are weak, standards erode for all of us.
The early weeks of the Trump administration have sent alarming signals that its law enforcement priorities will target and punish working people, rather than those who steal their wages, harass them on the job and expose them to dangerous working conditions. Such strategies make people afraid to go to work and take their children to school, let alone take action to demand better working conditions or speak up when they encounter abuse. Moreover, they drive down the pay and protections for all working people—immigrant and non-immigrant alike.
U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement, sometimes in collaboration with local law enforcement, has arrested hundreds of immigrants, regardless of how long they have lived in the United States or how strong their ties to the community. These highly visible enforcement actions make working people far less likely to exercise their rights at work or to cooperate with law enforcement in their communities. Worse, we hear accounts that racial profiling tactics are leading to collateral arrests and that detainees are being denied due process and access to counsel—further chilling the exercise of fundamental rights.
The labor movement calls on the administration to rein in the tactics that terrorize immigrant workers and fail to make our communities safer or our jobs better. Cities and states around the country have shown a better way forward by committing to ensure basic rights and protections to all members of their communities. The labor movement will stand proudly and firmly with all local leaders who support workers’ rights and prevent exploitation. We know these communities are defending our right to organize to lift standards and cracking down on abusive employers who retaliate against working people. These are core values of the labor movement.
LULAC Condemns DHS Memos That Set the Stage for Mass Deportations
Enforcement Priorities Apply to Almost Every Undocumented Immigrant 02/21/2017.
WASHINGTON, D.C. – Today, the Department of Homeland Security (DHS) released a series of memos detailing the enforcement procedures for President Trump’s executive orders on immigration and border security.
Under the new guidance, the Department of Homeland Security has effectively ended the Obama-era focus on deporting the most dangerous criminal aliens and has replaced it with a policy that makes almost every undocumented immigrant an enforcement priority. Those accused or even suspected of breaking the law will now be targeted for deportation without a trial. Due process protections and access to our judicial system are dramatically eroded with the expansion of “expedited removal” to the entire country.
“The new guidelines could result in the deportation of millions, including the non-threatening hardworking immigrants that President Trump has said he wants to help,” said LULAC National President Roger C. Rocha, Jr. “Without prioritization, criminal felons will be lost in the hunt for harmless undocumented immigrants whose only infraction is seeking a better life for themselves and their families.”
WCVI President Denounces Trump Administrations Directive on Deportations
(Los Angeles, Feb 21, 2017) The narrative that early Trump Administration executive orders were so controversial and amounted to such bad policy because the Trump team was in chaos has turned out to be utterly false. After a month of self-organization, the “well written” Trump Department of Homeland Security (DHS) implementing memo spells out the worst-case scenario of mass deportations, criminalization, and border militarization.
Indeed WCVI accuses the Trump Administration of seeking to launch a sui generis ethnic cleansing campaign against undocumented immigrants, 85% of whom are from Latin America, Africa and Asia.
Definition of ethnic cleansing: the expulsion, imprisonment, or killing of an ethnic minority by a dominant majority in order to achieve ethnic homogeneity
The DHS Memo broadly defines who should be deported, far more so than under Obama, and in practice would cover nearly all undocumented rather than the 1% with criminal records. It also enhances the existing DHS/ICE “deportation force” with 15,000 new personnel.
Under Trumps’ plan, human and civil rights violations will impact tens if not hundreds of thousands of immigrants and citizens alike. Under Obama, 20,000 US citizens were mistakenly captured in raids, this kind of ethno-racial profiling will get worse with the new directives.
The cost to taxpayers of hunting down the 11 million undocumented will be tens of billions of dollars.
The annual economic impact of forcibly removing seven million employed undocumented immigrants from the economy will be hundreds of billions of dollars. Entire regional economic sectors like agriculture, hospitality, and construction, in California, Texas, Florida, New York, New Jersey, Illinois, Arizona, and Nevada will go into contraction.
Immigrant families will suffer mightily as parents will be criminalized for uniting with their children. Federally funded private immigrant prisons along the border will reap massive profits as they are expanded and filled to the gills with obligatory incarceration of captured immigrants.
The border will become a further militarized “no – mans – land” by adding 5,000 border guards and more than a thousand miles of wall to the already existing 20,000 guards and 700 miles of fencing at a cost of 20-40 billion taxpayer dollars. This at a time when all the data shows net zero or near net zero cross border migration since 2007:
Coincidentally, unless a miracle happens, the Supreme Court will soon enable US border guards to shoot to kill Mexican immigrants on Mexican soil!
WCVI calls on “the resistance movement” to pressure Congress to deny appropriations to Trump’s immigrant ethnic cleansing campaign and border militarization. Instead Congress should enact a common sense legalization program for law abiding undocumented persons and Trump should halt his cold war on Mexico.