Civil Rights Groups: House Hearing Just Another Anti-Immigrant Sideshow

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
September 21, 2016

CONTACT
Juan Gastelum, National Immigration Law Center, gastelum@nilc.org, 213-375-3149
Adam Luna, United We Dream, adam@unitedwedream.org
Carl Lipscombe, Black Alliance for Just Immigration, carl@blackalliance.org

Civil Rights Groups: House Hearing Just Another Anti-Immigrant Sideshow

Political Leaders Should Move Past Xenophobic Rhetoric

WASHINGTON – As the House Judiciary Committee plans for an Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) oversight hearing with ICE Director Sarah Saldaña tomorrow at 10 a.m. ET, we call on those looking to be leaders on immigration to cast aside harmful and xenophobic rhetoric that divides our communities and instead focus on realistic, humane and just reforms. House Judiciary Committee members, along with Ms. Saldaña, have a long history of using irresponsible rhetoric that paints our country’s diverse and vibrant immigrant communities in a sweeping and denigrating light and ignores their enormous social and economic contributions.

Avideh Moussavian, Policy Attorney, National Immigration Law Center: “Anyone serious about ICE oversight should be asking why ICE is criminalizing immigrant communities through aggressive tactics like home raids that create a ripple effect of fear. Why is ICE targeting vulnerable populations of women and children seeking asylum in the U.S. and flagrantly violating due process by denying immigrants any meaningful opportunity to present their case to a judge? Meaningful oversight means ensuring that ICE is held accountable for complying with civil rights laws, and that there is transparency for how the agency operates.”

Carl Lipscombe, Policy & Legal Manager, Black Alliance for Just Immigration: “ICE policies are destroying black and brown immigrant communities. On one hand, you’ve got lawmakers on all sides calling for criminal justice reform, and the Department of Justice saying it rejects destructive labels like “felon” and “convict” and that it wants to cut ties with prison profiteers. In alarming contrast, DHS continues to incarcerate immigrants at record levels and promote damaging stereotypes about our communities.”

Greisa Martinez Rosas, Advocacy Director, United We Dream: “Our country needs fewer deportations and more relief on immigration. Instead, this Congressional committee is demanding more deportations and less relief. Director Saldaña leads an agency that is guilty of abusing our communities. Director Saldaña and her agency should be held accountable for this abuse but instead, Congressional leaders are berating her for not separating families quickly enough.”

Tomorrow’s hearing will be streamed on https://judiciary.house.gov/hearing/oversight-united-states-immigration-customs-enforcement/.

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