IRG: Immigrant Rights Group Update 11.25.18

THE FOLLOWING WAS THOUGHTFULLY WRITTEN BY JUDY SCOTT OF THE IMMIGRANT RIGHTS GROUP:

OWC MEMBERS WATCHED WITH HORROR AS TRUMP TRIED TO SCARE VOTERS BEFORE THE MID-TERM ELECTIONS WITH TALES OF A SO-CALLED CARAVAN OF HOODLUMS HEADED ACROSS MEXICO TO INVADE THE U.S. TO INCREASE THIS ALARM, TRUMP ALSO ORDERED MILITARY TROOPS DEPLOYED TO OUR SOUTHWEST BORDER TO "PROTECT" THEM FROM A NON-EXISTENT THREAT. (THE PENTAGON JUST REPORTED TO CONGRESS THE DEPLOYMENT PLANS WILL COST TAX PAYERS AN ESTIMATED $210 MILLION.)

CONTRARY TO TRUMP'S FAKE NEWS, THIS CARAVAN IS ACTUALLY COMPRISED OF MEN, WOMEN AND CHILDREN FLEEING VIOLENCE IN THEIR HOME COUNTRIES. THEY SEEK ASYLUM, SAFETY AND AN ESCAPE FROM AN UNRELENTING LIFE OF POVERTY.

CLICK HERE TO READ AN EXCELLENT ARTICLE DESCRIBING THE PLIGHT OF THESE REFUGEES: "I LIVE IN HONDURAS, WHERE PEOPLE ARE IN CONSTANT FEAR OF BEING MURDERED. IT'S NO WONDER THEY JOIN CARAVANS," BY AMELIA FRANK-VITALE, FORTUNE MAGAZINE.

THE MID-TERM ELECTIONS WERE AN HISTORIC REBUKE OF TRUMP'S POLICIES. DEMS TOOK BACK CONTROL OF THE U.S. HOUSE OF REPRESENTATIVES WITH AN ADDITIONAL 40 SEATS (AT LAST COUNT).

DESPITE THESE ELECTION RESULTS, HOWEVER, THE FIGHT FOR IMMIGRANT JUSTICE IS RAGING. TRUMP CONTINUES TO ESCALATE HIS ATTACK ON IMMIGRANTS, DEFYING FEDERAL LAW BY ISSUING AN ANTI-REFUGEE PROCLAMATION ON NOVEMBER 9, FOLLOWED BY THE ISSUANCE OF A NEW RULE THAT BANNED MIGRANTS FROM APPLYING FOR ASYLUM IF THEY FAILED TO MAKE THE REQUEST AT A LEGAL CHECKPOINT. THEY WERE DECLARED INELIGIBLE TO APPLY FOR ASYLUM UNLESS THEY ENTERED THE U.S. THROUGH AN OFFICIAL PORT OF ENTRY.

FORTUNATELY THE ACLU, ALONG WITH OTHER ADVOCACY GROUPS, SUED THE TRUMP ADMINISTRATION. ON NOVEMBER 19 A FEDERAL DISTRICT (JUDGE JON TIGAR IN CALIFORNIA) ISSUED A NATION-WIDE ORDER, PUTTING A TEMPORARY HOLD ON THE RULE. TRUMP LASHED BACK, CALLING JUDGE TIGAR  "AN OBAMA JUDGE" AND DECLARING THE 9TH CIRCUIT U.S. COURT OF APPEALS (WHERE AN APPEAL OF JUDGE TIGAR'S DECISIONS WOULD GO) TO BE A "DISGRACE."

WE KNOW TRUMP WILL CONTINUE TO PURSUE AGGRESSIVE WAYS TO ATTACK IMMIGRANT RIGHTS AND BLOCK REFUGEES SEEKING ASYLUM IN THE UNITED STATES.

OWC MEMBERS HAVE ASKED WHAT WE MIGHT DO TO HELP FROM OUR CORNER OF THE WORLD ON ORCAS. HERE ARE A FEW SUGGESTIONS:

::: MONEY CONTRIBUTIONS OF SUPPORT ARE ALWAYS NEEDED.  

BELOW ARE THREE RECOMMENDATIONS:

FAMILIESBELONGTOGETHER.ORG

THIS BROAD-BASED COALITION GROUP IS HELPING REFUGEES ON THE CARAVAN, OPERATING OUT OF TIJUANA, MEXICO. TO DATE THEY REPORT 800 REFUGEES HAVE ARRIVED AND ABOUT 2500 MORE ARE EXPECTED.

HIAS.ORG

HIAS (THE HEBREW IMMIGRANT AID SOCIETY) WAS FOUNDED IN 1881. HIAS DESCRIBES ITS CURRENT MISSION AS: "BECAUSE THE RIGHT TO REFUGE IS A UNIVERSAL HUMAN RIGHT, HIAS IS NOW DEDICATED TO PROVIDING WELCOME, SAFETY AND FREEDOM TO REFUGEES OF ALL FAITHS AND ETHNICITIES FROM ALL OVER THE WORLD." THE MAN ARRESTED FOR THE TREE OF LIFE SYNAGOGUE MASSACRE ON OCTOBER 27 IN PITTSBURGH, HAD POSTED A TRAIL OF ANTI-SEMITIC RANTS, INCLUDING HATEFUL MESSAGES ABOUT THE WORK OF HIAS ON BEHALF OF IMMIGRANTS.

AL OTRO LADO

DONATIONS TO AL OTRO LADO GO DIRECTLY TO SERVING INDIGENT DEPORTEES, MIGRANTS AND REFUGEES IN TIJUANA AND LOS ANGELES, INCLUDING A BORDER RIGHTS PROJECT FOR DETAINED ASYLUM SEEKERS: HTTPS://ALOTROLADO.ORG/

::: SUBMIT YOUR OWN PUBLIC COMMENTS ON WHY TRUMP'S PROPOSED RULE ON THE PUBLIC CHARGE SHOULD BE REJECTED - DECEMBER 10 DEADLINE

IT IS REALLY HELPFUL FOR PEOPLE TO SUBMIT AS MANY COMMENTS OPPOSING THIS RULE AS POSSIBLE. THE COMMENTS CAN BE WRITTEN IN PLAIN LANGUAGE. THEY DO NOT REQUIRE YOU TO BE A LAWYER OR ACADEMIC. JUST SPEAK YOUR MIND, AS DESCRIBED IN THE INSTRUCTIONS BELOW.

COMMENT ON PUBLIC CHARGE PROPOSED RULE - DEADLINE DECEMBER 10

THIS RULE MAY SEEM COMPLICATED BUT IT WILL HAVE A VAST LONG LASTING IMPACT ON MANY IMMIGRANTS WHO SEEK LEGAL STATUS IN THIS COUNTRY. IT PROPOSES TO DISQUALIFY CERTAIN PEOPLE FROM BECOMING PERMANENT RESIDENTS. THIS CHANGE IS BEING DONE THROUGH A RE-DEFINITION OF THE TERM “PUBLIC CHARGE.”  A PERSON WHO IS OTHERWISE QUALIFIED TO BECOME A PERMANENT RESIDENT (E.G. HUSBANDS AND WIVES OF US CITIZENS)  ARE DISQUALIFIED IF THEY HAVE EVER TAKEN ANY FORM OF PUBLIC BENEFIT IN THE PAST OR ARE LIKELY TO, IN THE FUTURE. UNDER THE PROPOSED RULE, TH PUBLIC BENEFIT MAY BE AS LITTLE A BENEFIT AS, FOR INSTANCE, HAVING BEEN COVERED BY APPLE HEALTH AS A CHILD, OR RECEIVING EMERGENCY MEDICAL CARE PAID IN PART BY FEDERAL OR STATE OR LOCAL GOVERNMENT FUNDING SOURCES.

THE NORTHWEST IMMIGRANT RIGHTS PROJECT (NWIRP.ORG) HAS AN EXCELLENT DESCRIPTION OF THE "PUBLIC CHARGE" ATTACK ON IMMIGRANT FAMILIES AND AN EASY WAY TO SUBMIT YOUR OWN PUBLIC COMMENT OPPOSING THIS RULE BY DECEMBER 10:

WWW.PROTECTINGIMMIGRANTFAMILIES.ORG

B. TRUMP IS ALSO SEEKING A PROPOSED REGULATION REGARDING FAMILY SEPARATION TO DISSOLVE THE TWO-DECADES-OLD "FLORES" SETTLEMENT. THE FLORES SETTLEMENT  SETS STANDARDS FOR THE TREATMENT OF CHILDREN IN IMMIGRANT DETENTION,  INCLUDING THE REQUIREMENT THAT CHILDREN CANNOT BE KEPT IN SECURE, UNLICENSED DETENTION FACILITIES FOR MORE THAN 20 DAYS. THE COMMENT PERIOD ON THIS PROPOSED RULE IS NOW CLOSED AND WE AWAIT THE FINAL RULE.HOPEFULLY ANY ADVERSE CHANGES  WILL BE SUBJECT OF A SUCCESSFUL LEGAL CHALLENGE. MEANWHILE YOU CAN WRITE OR CALL MEMBERS IN THE U.S. CONGRESS TO VOICE YOUR STRONG OPPOSITION TO FAMILY SEPARATION AND DETENTION OF IMMIGRANT CHILDREN.