Deportation Raids Split Many Cities, States

first_imgDeportation Raids Split Many Cities, StatesSTATELINE By Teresa WiltzCarmen was sleeping when they came for her and her two children. It was early Saturday morning, Jan. 2, and about a dozen federal immigration officials banged on her parents’ door in Atlanta. The 27-year-old single mother from El Salvador said she had just enough time to throw on some clothes over her pajamas.Carmen, who illegally crossed the Mexico-Texas border with her children in June 2014, was shocked when the officials said they were deporting her right away. She was in the midst of an appeals process — and even had a court appointment for that Monday — in a bid to stay.“I asked them, ‘Why are you sending me back to my country where it’s so dangerous? I could be killed,’ ” she said from a detention center in Dilley, Texas, where she is being held with her children, ages 6 and 8. (She asked that her real name not be used for fear of compromising her case.)The mother and her two children are among 121 people — mostly women and children from Guatemala, Honduras and Mexico — who were rounded up early this month, in raids primarily in Georgia, North Carolina and Texas amid growing fears that the U.S. faces a surge of illegal unaccompanied minors fleeing violence in Central America comparable to 2014. So far 77 have been deported.The deportation raids have sparked fear in U.S. immigrant communities and highlight the wide confusion and political division among federal, state and local authorities on how the nation should deal with as many as 11 million undocumented immigrants, most of whom entered the country illegally across the southern border.The Democratic mayors of Philadelphia and New Haven, Connecticut, last week said they would not cooperate with the deportation efforts. The Democratic New York City Council announced that city agencies would not report undocumented people to federal authorities.In Maryland, the Democratic executive in Montgomery County said local police wouldn’t cooperate in any raids. And Prince George’s County urged federal officials not to round up children in schools or people in stores, social service agencies or county buildings.Meanwhile, in Texas, Republican Gov. Greg Abbott last month extended the 18-month mission of National Guard troops along the border in response to a rise in the number of unaccompanied minors crossing the Rio Bravo.And the U.S. Supreme Court said Tuesday it will hear a case involving President Barack Obama’s 2014 order that would have provided protection to as many as 4.9 million undocumented immigrants — an order that has been stayed while a lawsuit works its way through the courts.Texas and 25 other mostly Republican states filed the suit against the order, while dozens of mostly Democratic cities, the National League of Cities and the U.S. Conference of Mayors have backed the order in court briefs.At the same time U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) agents are carrying out the raids, the Obama administration is building temporary shelters to house unaccompanied immigrant children in Colorado, Florida and New Mexico.The shelters will house up to 2,200 children for on average 32 days each and will provide schooling for them until they are placed with sponsor families. Under federal law, unaccompanied children must be transferred out of detention centers within 72 hours.The federal government “doesn’t want to get caught the way they did in 2014,” said Marc Rosenblum, who is leaving his position at the Migration Policy Institute to become deputy assistant secretary of Homeland Security and director of the Office of Immigration Statistics. “They want to give relief to people who have valid claims while enforcing their borders.”Either way, he said, it’s a dilemma with no easy solutions. “It’s a tough policy problem.”Targeted RaidsTargeted RaidsWhite House spokesman Josh Earnest said the raids begun last month are intended as deterrence, by discouraging people from attempting “the dangerous journey from Central America to the southwest border.”They have targeted families who had illegally crossed the border after May 1, 2014, and who had exhausted their legal options for staying, ICE said. The families will be held in detention centers for processing and then flown back to their home countries.But some defiant local officials say the raids have created a public safety crisis. Parents, they say, are keeping their children home from school and skipping doctor’s appointments. Whole families, they say, are hiding out in their homes, too frightened to go to the grocery store — or to talk to the police.“This is having a severe impact on the immigrant community itself,” said Maryland state Del. Ana Sol-Gutiérrez, a Democrat. “They are very much afraid of what ICE raids can do to their families. The community is panicked.”In announcing local police wouldn’t cooperate in the deportation effort, Montgomery County Executive Ike Leggett said, “We want all of our community members to know that they are free to go about their daily life, to go to schools and work, social service agencies, hospitals and medical clinics.“If you have reason to need help from our police, do not be afraid to call on them.”The SurgeThe raids come amid a rise in illegal crossings at the border, where last fall thousands of families and unaccompanied children fleeing gang violence, drought and poverty in El Salvador, Guatemala and Honduras, slipped under the fence.The rise — more than 17,000 between October and December, compared to nearly 8,000 during the same period the previous year — has stoked fears that the nation will experience a surge like the one it witnessed in 2014, when roughly 69,000 children swarmed the border, creating a crisis in U.S. detention facilities and overwhelming states and municipalities.“Right now, we’re on pace to have more families and unaccompanied minors arrive in fiscal year 2016 than in 2014,” Rosenblum said.Once they cross, they end up in every state. How they are treated can depend on which one they go to.California, Florida, New York, Texas and the Washington, D.C., region that includes Maryland and Virginia have the largest numbers of unaccompanied children.California threw open its doors. In 2014, Gov. Jerry Brown, a Democrat, signed into law a bill allocating $3 million in legal aid for Central American children. That same year, then-Maryland Gov. Martin O’Malley, a Democrat, sought to house the children in foster homes rather than in group shelters and pushed to have them treated as refugees.But other states made it clear the children were not welcome. Iowa Gov. Terry Branstad, a Republican, said in 2014 he did not want the children sent to his state because it would encourage others to cross the border illegally. Meanwhile, then-Nebraska Gov. Dave Heineman, a Republican, protested that the federal government had sent 200 children to his state without consulting him.Today, the raids are happening in cities and states that have some of the toughest immigration courts, said Amy Fischer, policy director for RAICES, a Texas-based organization that is providing pro bono legal aid to immigrants in the deportation centers.For example, she said, “very, very few people get granted asylum in Atlanta.”Other regions, such as the Washington, D.C., area, have courts that tend to be more immigrant-friendly, Fischer said. It’s also easier for immigrants there to find a lawyer, she said.U.S. Justice Department statistics back that up. In Atlanta, only 1 percent of asylum requests were granted in 2014, compared to 71 percent in Arlington, Virginia, and 84 percent in New York City.Escalating ViolenceAs Carmen found out, Atlanta wasn’t the best place to arrive undocumented, after fleeing her home and job as a cosmetologist in El Salvador in the face of gang violence in the summer of 2014.She was apprehended at the Texas border, where she applied for asylum and was ordered to wear an ankle bracelet to track her whereabouts. From there, she went to Atlanta, to be with her parents and brothers and sisters. She said she never missed a court appearance. But in October, a judge ordered her deported.Carmen was awaiting a decision on her appeal when ICE knocked on her door and hauled her off. Now, she said, she is working with her pro bono lawyers and praying for good news. “I hope God lets me stay,” she said. FacebookTwitterCopy LinkEmailSharelast_img read more

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Islanders Keep Hope Alive for More Playoff Games at Nassau Coliseum

first_imgSign up for our COVID-19 newsletter to stay up-to-date on the latest coronavirus news throughout New York By Joe NuzzoIn what could have been, and still could be, the final game played by the New York Islanders at Nassau Veterans Memorial Coliseum, the team defeated the Washington Capitals 3-1 on Saturday night.The victory forces a game seven Monday night in Washington to determine which team will move on to the Eastern Conference finals. If the Islanders fail to move on to the next round of the playoffs, at least they would have finished up their final home game with a victory before they move to the Barclays Center in Brooklyn next season.“Basically, it was the season on the line for us” Islanders goaltender Jaroslav Halak said. “They came out hard and played well. We need the same Monday night. It’s going to be hard, but we all know why we’re here.”So did the Islander fans in attendance often chanting “Can You Hear Us” at deafening levels. The chant, clearly in response to a comment made to the press by Washington captain Alex Ovechkin, who said last week that fans in the Verizon Center were louder than those at the coliseum.Islanders defenseman Brian Strait commented on the support the Islanders received from their fans at the coliseum this afternoon stating “The fans were rocking the place.”John Tavares opened up the scoring at the 6:57 mark of the first period on a pass by Ryan Strome. Tavares put a wrist shot by Washington goaltender Branden Holtby. Then, Washington’s John Carlson tied the game with just 4.3 seconds left in the first period.It wasn’t until the 10:33 mark of the third that the Islanders took back the lead. Nikolay Kulemin took a feed from Nick Leddy and slipped the puck past Washington’s Braden Holtby.The Islanders secured the victory with an empty net goal by Cal Clutterbuck with 53 seconds left in the third period.Should the Islanders defeat the Capitals Monday night, the coliseum will be open for business a bit longer.The Islanders would then face the Rangers in the conference finals. The first two games would take place at Madison Square Garden. The Islanders would then host games three, four and if needed six, at “The Old Barn.”last_img read more

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Turbo KO Football title to be decided tonight

first_img… Fruta Conquerors U-20 play GFC AN eventful matchup of skills will be on show this evening when the final of the Turbo KO football tournament gets going at the Ministry of Education ground.The youthful Fruta Conquerors U-20 side will come up against a GFC side, which boasts many youth players, in a battle to determine the highly anticipated Turbo title, from 21:00hrs.Both teams are fired up for their encounter. At a pre-final press conference on Friday both teams threw down the gauntlet to their opponenst.GFC, through their captain Kelsey Benjamin, said, “Sunday (today) won’t be an easy game. For instance I’m coming up against schoolmates and teammates because I know them and they know me.”“But we intend to bring our A-game and come out on top,” he added.Their coach, Delon Cadogan, was not one for words, saying, “My players have asked me to leave the talking for today and we will do that.”However, he added, “The victory is going to go the team that make the least mistakes and we’ve been working on making less mistakes.Opposing coach Wayne St Jules was not shy about his team’s chances.“We are looking forward to winning this second tournament of Petra. We have already copped the LIMACOL and we are coming to do the double,” he said.Captain Nicholas McArthur echoed the sentiments, “We are coming today to play out football and everybody knows that GFC are a good team; it’s the team I came from but they have to come hard.”On hand during Friday’s briefing was Raymond Govinda, Guyana Beverages Inc. (GBI), (Turbo) Marketing executive who wished both teams well.“So far as a company we are pleased with the tournament. Petra has done a good job with organising the tournaments. We have seen some new talent coming out and we are very happy. The future of football is sitting right beside me here,” he opined, hinting at the two young captains.Tonight’s final will be played after the third-place playoff between Pouderoyen and Northern Rangers.Apart from the Champions’ purse of $400 000, the runners-up will pocket $200 000, third place $100 000 and fourth place $50 000.last_img read more

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