The U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) agency is expected to conduct raids in 10 cities across the United States on June 14 targeting recently arrived migrant families with final removal orders from an immigration judge.
ICE is a federal law enforcement agency in charge of arresting, detaining and deporting undocumented immigrants. It was established in 2003 within the Department of Homeland Security. Though the exact locations and details are unknown, reports have identified a few of the cities expected to be hit in the raids, including New York City, Los Angeles, Houston, and Chicago. Acting Homeland Security Secretary Kevin McAleenan declined to elaborate on the timing and specifics of the raids because of “operational security.”
Rights organizations, such as The American Civil Liberties Union (ACLU) and Amnesty International, have been preparing for the mass arrests. These organizations have stressed the importance of “knowing your rights” before the ICE raids begin.
Here is what ICE agents legally can and cannot do and what anyone approached by ICE can legally request.
Now more than ever, we need everyone to know: WE HAVE RIGHTS.
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— ACLU (@ACLU) July 12, 2019
“You DO NOT Have to Open Your Door”
“To be allowed to enter your home, ICE must have a warrant signed by a judge,” according to the National Immigration Law Center. For a warrant to be valid, it must have your correct name and address on it. ICE agents can also slide a warrant under the door if they want to show you the warrant.
Also, the ACLU of Texas has advised people to be wary of ICE agents pretending to investigate another case to gain entry into your home.
You Can Ask for a Lawyer
The ACLU and the National Immigration Law Center both advise asking for a lawyer before speaking to ICE. Immigration lawyers can help clients through the immigration law system.
The National Immigration Project has offered online resources for finding state-by-state listings in their National Lawyers Guild section, though not every state have attorneys included. Additionally, the American Immigration Lawyers Association offers an Immigration Lawyer Search, which provided options for what kind of immigration laws you need information or help with.
You Have the Right to Remain Silent
The ACLU also states that everyone has the right to remain silent in any interaction with an ICE agent. You can also tell an ICE agent that you wish to remain silent. Everything you say can be used against you in deportation proceedings, so the ACLU recommends exercising caution in engaging with an ICE agent.
Don’t Resist Arrest or Try to Run
The ACLU says that if you run from ICE, the results can be legally dangerous and even potentially deadly. Additionally, anyone who helps an immigrant escape ICE can be charged with obstruction of justice by the Department of Justice, among other charges.
Anyone that attempts to physically stop an arrest can be charged with resisting a public officer.
Know you rights.
ICE agents will be conducting deportation raids across the country.
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— Rep. Ilhan Omar (@Ilhan) July 11, 2019
Don’t Provide False Documents
The Immigration Defense Project warns against lying to immigration enforcement agents and providing false documents can be used against you in any court proceedings.
Don’t Sign Anything
The National Immigration Law Center recommends that, unless you have a lawyer who advises it, you should not sign any documents ICE asks you to.
According to a report from the Miami Herald, signing a document provided by ICE can mean you are signing your own deportation order.
You Are Allowed to Ask for a Translator
According to the ACLU, if an immigrant arrested by an ICE agent does not speak English, they can request someone to translate in their detention process. The National Immigration Law Center also said that certified Spanish interpreters work in the federal court system.
You Do Not Have to Tell an ICE Agent Where Anybody Is
According to the Immigration Defense Project, you are under no legal requirement to tell any ICE agents where someone they are looking for is, but they also recommend not lying. Instead, you have the option to ask agents to leave their contact information.
Make a Plan
The Miami Herald recommends having an action plan in place to handle any immediate concerns like childcare. Attorneys also advise that loved ones have an attorney on hand to contact immediately in the event of an arrest.
For families concerned about separation due ICE raids, we encourage you to utilize CT's Family Preparedness Plan, which contains resources to ensure there is a plan in place for the safe care of children in the event of detainment or deportation.
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— Governor Ned Lamont (@GovNedLamont) July 12, 2019