Immigrant Justice Update: Crisis on the Border and in the Courts

The LJP Familia is shocked and dismayed by the barrage of immigrant justice reversals being perpetrated by the current administration. While we are processing how we’ve come to this point, we want you, our community, to know how we are tackling these assaults on our collective rights. We need the help of our allies now more than ever. You can make a difference by raising your voice, volunteering and donating.

Read on to learn more about our work to address:

Crisis on the Border: Criminalization of Our Communities

The humanitarian crisis on our southern border is directly attributable to the ideological decisions of both the Attorney General and the President, regardless of and how they attempt to undo the all the harm their inhumane policies of criminalizing immigrant parents entering our country and forcibly removing their children has caused. LatinoJustice recognizes that beyond the obvious and immediate need to reunite children with their parents, we must also ensure that this Administration stops the increasing criminalization of migration. Today’s humanitarian crisis is also a representational crisis in securing adequate legal counseling and representation – one that precedes the callous decisions of the last several weeks.

To that end we aim to do the following:

  • We will deploy our legal staff to assist legal service providers in select border states as a way to increase the capacity of an attorney corps of volunteers – and we will then replenish those staffers with volunteers from our networks;
  • We will provide direct litigation support to pending court challenges and the forthcoming action to be taken by State Attorneys General, mobilizing our national Latinx peer organizations to weigh in on what’s at stake in such litigation that seeks to preserve the families crossing our border;
  • We will monitor current child placements and advocate for appropriate residential services with our colleagues in immigration and/or family law practice in Florida, New York and New Jersey where some of the children forcibly separated from their parents have been temporarily placed; and
  • We will continue our direct advocacy, community engagement and education in rallies, protests and other manifestations of our total repudiation of these human rights violations in Long Island, Florida, New York, Washington, DC and beyond.

Read our statement rejecting the recent Executive Order here that seeks to hold families in detention facilities indefinitely.

Crisis in the Courts: Muslim Ban Ruling Reinforces Blanket Discrimination

New York, NY - Today, the U.S. Supreme Court dealt another blow to civil and human rights in the United States. In upholding the Muslim Travel Ban, the Supreme Court has effectively sanctioned discrimination against a group of people based on national identity. In a 5-4 ruling on Trump v. Hawaii, the Court upheld this administration’s racist and xenophobic Muslim Ban. The Court declined to interrogate the President’s true motivations behind the ban which was espoused in countless public statements by administration staff and the President himself. Instead, the Court “limited [its] review to whether the Executive gave a ‘facially legitimate and bona fide’ reason for its action,” to bar certain people from entering this country.

“The Muslim ban, separation of families on the border, and the rise of alt-right nationalism, all of this is the construct of President Trump’s xenophobic and racist agenda. The Supreme Court’s latest ruling enables him to continue blanket discrimination by banning Muslims and opens the door for new forms of discrimination. As we continue fighting for civil rights, we recognize how today’s ruling highlights the importance of intersectional organizing and litigation to resist this onslaught on our communities. It is because of this that we stand with our Muslim brothers and sisters against the Trump administration’s persecution of religious groups and criminalization of immigrant children in the name of national security,” said Juan Cartagena, President and General Counsel at LatinoJustice PRLDEF.

Read the full statement here.

Join Us: Build the Latinx Legal Resistance

Everything we outlined is only possible because of the decades of support we have received from the vanguard of Latinx community organizing and legal resistance. Today we face a new version of the forces that seek to discriminate and marginalize our communities. In order to mount an effective resistance in the courts and in the streets, we need your help. Below are some next steps for how we can build this resistance.

  • Join us in this struggle. LatinoJustice will be at the End Family Separation Rally in New York City, Long Island and elsewhere. Find a local action by clicking here. Special shoutout to the rockstar community-based organizations doing the important groundwork to make this and other actions happen.
  • Make a Donation here to our legal and advocacy work as we challenge legislation that codifies racial profiling.
  • Learn more about how you can volunteer to help on the front lines; email and we will connect you with the relevant project leader.

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