WASHINGTON — Ahead of raids the Trump administration is reportedly set to begin on Sunday, rights groups on Friday urgently circulated information to immigrant communities and families nationwide to ensure their rights are known and protections are in place.
Three officials with knowledge of Trump’s directive to Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) told the Washington Post that up to 2,000 families facing deportation orders could be targeted in 10 major cities, including Houston, Chicago, Miami, Los Angeles, Denver, New York, New Orleans, Atlanta, Baltimore, San Francisco, Newark, and Washington, D.C.
The news of the planned raids comes days after the president threatened that he would soon begin deporting “millions” of undocumented immigrants.
To prepare communities, groups including United We Dream and Raices posted on social media information about immigrants’ rights.
If ICE agents come to an immigrant’s home, one infographic made by the Fair Immigration Reform Movement (FIRM) read, he or she should not open the door. Instead, families should demand to see a warrant for arrest and exercise their right to remain silent and speak with a lawyer.
🚨🚨READ🚨🚨: ICE raids targeting families may be happening as soon as this weekend. Miami, LA, Chicago, Baltimore, DC, and NY are possible targets, and there could be more. Make sure you know your rights! #TrumpRaids #FamiliesBelongTogether pic.twitter.com/LOG3Yomw5I
— Fair Immigration Reform Movement (@Re4mImmigration) June 21, 2019
“Don’t give personal information or your fingerprints, or answer any questions about your status,” wrote FIRM. “Don’t hand over your ID or papers to the ICE agents. Don’t sign any forms or documents (paper or digital) that the ICE agents give you without speaking with an attorney.”
FIRM also compiled a list of ways communities and organizers can help immigrants ahead of the raids.
“Create an emergency list of a large number of lawyers that will be ready to roll immediately” to provide legal aid, FIRM wrote. “Prepare a database of the names and numbers of individuals who can help with translation and transportation…Identify local people in the town where the raid happened that can be ready to brief lawyers when they come.”
Rights advocates called on community members to connect with social justice groups in their area and vow to help undocumented immigrants if they saw a raid taking place, by familiarizing themselves with immigrants’ rights during a raid.
Raids are starting on Sunday in cities across the U.S.
— RAICES (@RAICESTEXAS) June 21, 2019
NYC is reportedly going to be raided by ICE this weekend. I’ve got room if anyone knows any organizations that are helping undocumented migrants with places to hide. My DMs are open. I’ll refuse entry to any city/state/federal agents. #ProtectEachOther https://t.co/HI0WLnfZ3Q
— Justin Hendrix (@justinhendrix) June 21, 2019
— melissa byrne (@mcbyrne) June 21, 2019
Find out if your city has a rapid response network to help sound the alarm about raids. Donate to organizations like @RAICESTEXAS and @ConMijente who are fighting this cruelty. Don’t talk to cops or ICE agents. Know your rights. https://t.co/GqVAP1wszs
— Evan Greer (@evan_greer) June 21, 2019
Rights advocates and lawmakers condemned Trump’s reported plan, which acting Homeland Security Secretary Kevin McAleenan had warned ICE would likely separate children from their parents, according to the Post.
“ICE raiding our communities is domestic terrorism,” tweeted the immigration legal aid non-profit Raices. “ICE is doing this to not just rip apart hundreds of families apart but also to terrorize everyone else. This is the definition of terrorism.”
Deporting hundreds of families—separating more children from their parents in the process—is inhumane. Our immigration policies should reflect America’s values, not betray them. My administration will defend and protect immigrants and their families. https://t.co/p8Dc4woi6r
— Elizabeth Warren (@ewarren) June 21, 2019
Up to 2,000 families will be targeted starting this Sunday. ICE will be arresting migrants in their work places & their homes. Children will run the risk of being separated from their parents.
We cannot let this happen again. Not on our watch. https://t.co/xYSfkKaIai
— RAICES (@RAICESTEXAS) June 21, 2019
The President who claims there is a crisis at the Southern border is sending ICE to raid communities & round up families across America. https://t.co/enRKKIq7Tt
— Rev. Dr. William J. Barber II (@RevDrBarber) June 21, 2019
Trump is reportedly intent on carrying out the widespread raids despite the McAleenan’s warnings.