Immigration

Never Again RI wants Biden to keep promise and end ICE contracts

“Many of our grandparents and great-grandparents left their homelands because the authorities were purposely hunting and hurting them. Many sought refuge in America, including Secretary Mayorkas’s family,” said Dr Aurit Lazerus, an organizer for Never Again Rhode Island.
Photo for Never Again RI wants Biden to keep promise and end ICE contracts

Published on September 27, 2021
By Steve Ahlquist

Never Again Rhode Island built a sukkah at the Roger Williams Memorial Park on North Main Street in Providence on Sunday to write postcards to Department of Homeland Security (DHS) Secretary Alejandro Mayorkas demanding a stop to the deputizing of local police officers as Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) agents.

Under the Trump Administration, over one hundred 287(g) contracts were signed with law enforcement organizations across the country, essentially authorizing local police officers to act as ICE agents and enforce federal immigration laws. Candidate and now President Joe Biden promised to cancel these contracts, but so far has has ended only one out of 115. As a result, “immigrants are still living in fear that a traffic stop could lead to them being torn from their family, caged, and then deported,” wrote Never Again in a statement.

In Providence a dozen people gathered to build a sukkah in memory of the huts in which the Israelites dwelt during their 40 years of wandering in the desert after escaping from slavery in Egypt.

“We build this hut, this Sukkah, to remember the Hebrew migration from slavery to freedom and the role of temporary housing,” said Dr Aurit Lazerus, an organizer for Never Again Rhode Island. “Thousands of years later, we still honor the trauma of searching for shelter. Needing to be welcomed and welcoming others is embedded in our religion and in our culture. Sadly, displacement and genocide are also entrenched in our history. Many of our grandparents and great-grandparents left their homelands because the authorities were purposely hunting and hurting them. Many sought refuge in America, including Secretary Mayorkas’s family.

“We ask that people who are vulnerable be given basic human protection from the violence of deportation at the hands of the police. Today, we send postcards to call on President Biden and Secretary Mayorkas to fulfill their campaign promise and cancel all 115 remaining 287 (g) contracts.”

The national Never Again organization will be conducting an action in Washington DC today.

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