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Say It Loud And Say It Clear: Immigrants Are Welcome Here

This past weekend, large-scale immigration raids in a half dozen states rounded up and detained hundreds of people. Immigrations and Customs Enforcement (ICE) maintains that these raids were business as usual; however, the scope and speed of the raids has immigrant rights groups concerned that this is the beginning of a new era of enhanced enforcement and deportation.

Trump himself tweeted Sunday morning that "gang members, drug dealers & others are being removed," and that the crackdown is a fulfillment of his campaign promises. Immigrant communities are terrified. Deportation proponents claim they are only interested in banishing criminals, but undocumented immigrants can be labeled criminals for nearly any encounter with the law.

It's scary stuff, but we've been here before and our voices make a difference. In 2012 Obama significantly reduced deportations as a result of public outrage and pressure. We don't know how this new administration will act from day to day but we can protect ourselves and our neighbors by speaking out, sharing information, and supporting the organizations that are working to safeguard immigrants.

What you can do

1. SAVE AND DISTRIBUTE THE DEPORTATION DEFENSE CARD. Download this card on your phone to have handy if you are approached by an immigration official or witness the same happening to someone else so that you know what to say and do. Consider printing and distributing the card to persons you know who may be at risk. Also direct those at risk to the ACLU guide on ICE showing up at your door.

2. CHECK OUT IMMIGRANT DEFENSE PROJECT'S RESOURCES on ICE Raids and Arrests, which includes community responses and raid map.

3. DOCUMENT A RAID ON YOUR PHONE IF YOU SEE ONE HAPPENING. Instructions here.

4. ATTEND A RALLY to protest raids and mass deportation. Find one in NY, find one near you, or organize a demonstration at your Senator's office during the upcoming Senate recess using these talking points for a face-to-face meeting if you can get one.

5. DONATE to organizations that are fighting for immigrant rights - some local ones in NYC: Make the Road, DRUM, NYIC