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Sep 20, 2017
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The Patch

Ensnared By ICE In Austin, Deported Immigrant Winds Up Murdered In Mexico

Local advocates and Grassroots Leadership decry the recent deportation of Juan Coronilla-Guerrero, 28, from Austin during the February ICE raids that led to his death in Mexico. He was arrested by ICE within the Travis County courthouse. “Immigration raids have impacts on individuals and their families that are now often deadly,” Bethany Carson of Grassroots Leadership said. “The county policy refusing to honor most unconstitutional detainers only protects immigrants in our community if they cannot later be snatched from our courts and our streets. Stopping ICE is now a life-and-death matter. Our local elected leaders must do everything within their power to stop these deportations.” Read more about Ensnared By ICE In Austin, Deported Immigrant Winds Up Murdered In Mexico

Sep 19, 2017
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Austin American-Statesman

Immigrant taken by ICE from Austin courthouse was killed in Mexico

Immigration advocates today responded with sadness and anger to news of the deaths of two men following apprehension by Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE). Juan Coronilla-Guerrero, who was arrested in February during a controversial raid on an Austin courthouse and later deported, was violently killed in Mexico last week, according to a story in the Austin American-Statesman. The article included this quote from Bethany Carson, immigration researcher and organizer with Grassroots: “It really is an act of violence at this point to continue the immigration policies that the government is currently pushing that are sending so many people back to their deaths. Read more about Immigrant taken by ICE from Austin courthouse was killed in Mexico"
Aug 9, 2017
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Ft. Worth Weekly

Back Into the Shadows

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Actually, there’s a lot to see: Donald Trump has made illegal immigration a central policy of his administration, and the changes that he is instituting are only going to make things worse, according to several people who work on behalf of illegal immigrants. Those changes include a harsh immigration crackdown with more jail time for detainees and rejecting asylum seekers. And the federal attitude is emboldening states to fire up their own harsher immigration laws, according to the accounts of more than a dozen organizations I contacted that are working on behalf of both illegal immigrants and asylum seekers.

One key change, according to those organizations, is that the Obama administration, which deported a record number of illegal immigrants, set the deportation priority on getting rid of people like Jiménez-Joseph, who had been convicted of a criminal felony. While Trump has said he will focus on those same convicted felons, he has actually made all illegal immigrants, from students to mothers of American kids, deportable. Additionally, some jail standards are being relaxed or ignored, worsening the living conditions of people in the deportation pipeline, and a whole lot more people are being detained because bonds for illegal immigrants have shot up. 

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Bethany Carson, an immigration policy researcher with Grassroots Leadership, an organization dedicated to eliminating private prisons, said it’s common practice since Trump took office: “There are so many asylum seekers turned away at the border that there are some immigrants’ rights organizations that are developing protocols that will allow them to accompany asylum seekers at the border to ensure that those seekers have their international rights, legal rights, protected.”

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“We are seeing asylum seekers denied bond even after their credible fear interviews are passed,” Carson said. “They now have to wait for a judge to give them a bond amount, instead of an immigration official like it used to be done. That meant less waiting time in detention prior to being released to await your court date. But we are also seeing higher bonds being asked, and those bonds have to be paid in full.” 

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“I think that is a direct result of the changes to the immigration court system based on the officials that Trump has selected,” Carson said. “These are a direct result of Trump’s position on immigration.”

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“We’ve already seen in words and actions how enforcement of detention and deportation has expanded in the last several months,” said Bob Libal, executive director of Grassroots Leadership. “We were already at record levels of detained illegal immigrants with the Obama administration, but that is quickly expanding. Read more about Back Into the Shadows

Humpday Hall of Shame: Obama in town for civil rights speech, could end deportations

On Thursday, April 10, President Barack Obama will attend a meeting commemorating the 50th anniversary of the Civil Rights Act in Austin, Texas, along with three former U.S. Presidents — Jimmy Carter, Bill Clinton and George W. Bush, the event's organizers said on Monday.  The Civil Rights Summit, slated from Tuesday to Thursday, is organized by the Lyndon B. Johnson Presidential Library located on the campus of the University of Texas at Austin. 

President Obama is scheduled to give a keynote speech on Thursday, and while he is speaking about civil rights, let us not forget the President's executive power to end deportations and his aggressive roll-out of the Secure Communities Program.

Read more about Humpday Hall of Shame: Obama in town for civil rights speech, could end deportations

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