Immigration raids vs. hurricanes, ending the week with DACA, and other immigration stories – September 8, 2017

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In an unusual twist, DHS announced that it is canceling “Operation Mega,” previously planned as a surprise, week-long series of immigration raids beginning September 17. Operation Mega had a goal of arresting at least 8,400 people across the country. NBC News broke the story on Thursday evening.

DACA stories dominate the news across the country, and not just in big cities. Sometimes media coverage is local and specific, as in the stories from Moorhead and St. Cloud today. Sometimes immigration coverage comes in the form of wire service reports. Immigrants are part of the fabric of community in small towns and rural areas as well as in large urban centers.

Homeland Security Cancels Massive Roundup of Undocumented Immigrants (NBC, 9/7/17) Did DHS cancel because of the hurricanes? Or because NBC broke the new about the planned “Operation Mega?” And are the raids actually canceled, or will they be back on by the 17th?

“President Donald Trump’s Department of Homeland Security had planned nationwide raids to target 8,400 undocumented immigrants later this month, according to three law enforcement officials and an internal document that described the plan as “the largest operation of its kind in the history of ICE,” an acronym for U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement.

“But after NBC News reported the plans late Thursday, the agency issued a statement saying it had cancelled nationwide enforcement actions due to Hurricane Irma and the damage caused by Hurricane Harvey.”

Continuing DACA coverage

How the end of DACA could affect lives of F-M immigrants (WDAY, 9/5/17)

“Martha Castanon of Moorhead has heard the stories young people from our area, now with uncertain futures here.

“There is a young woman here in NW Minnesota, lovely young lady good student, and siblings with DACA status, good students in school, another young man who graduated a couple of years ago, and is working,” said Castanon.

“They are childhood arrivals, they came as children and did not have a choice for example, when my family worked as migrant farm workers we came to wisconsin to pick cucumbers, I had no say in that, it is a decision my parents made. Same thing with these kids,” said Castanon.

Protesters rally in St. Cloud to defend DACA (St. Cloud Times,9/5/17)

“After the Trump administration announced Tuesday plans to end the Deferred Action for Children Arrivals program — known as DACA — protesters rallied in downtown St. Cloud to defend the protections to nearly 800,000 people who entered the country illegally as children.

“St. Cloud State University President Ashish Vaidya issued a statement in support of DACA.

“…I stand with the hundreds of university presidents – and Minnesota, business, community and Congressional leaders from both parties – urging our federal delegation to preserve DACA’s protections. The termination of DACA would leave thousands of young people across the country with uncertain futures. Some of those young people could be our students. …”

Minn. attorney general plans to join suit against Trump over ending DACA, (AP via MPR, 9/7/17)

Christians and DACA (NPR, 9/7/17) You may expect Catholics and mainline Protestant churches to support DACA. But did you know that many evangelical churches – including Trump supporters – oppose ending DACA?

“Evangelical Pastor Tony Suarez has supported President Trump on many issues. As a member of Trump’s evangelical advisory board, he’s even been willing to go along with him on a border wall. But Suarez and his organization, the National Hispanic Christian Leadership Conference, disagree with Trump on the DACA program, Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals.”

What the DACA phaseout means for workers and employers (Los Angeles Times, 9/6/17)

“If the program ends, “denying work authorization to people who grew up and were educated in the United States would have a significant negative impact on employers,” Mike Aitken, vice president of government affairs for the Society for Human Resource Management, a trade group for business human-resources managers, said in a statement Tuesday.”

Who are the ‘Dreamers’ whose dreams have been deferred? You might be surprised. (Los Angeles Times, 9/6/17) This article includes several individual stories – young DACA recipients from Korea, Pakistan, Mexico  and other countries.

“Who are the Dreamers? They are more diverse than you might think. According to the Brookings Institution, immigrants from 195 countries had applied for DACA status as of 2015. Most were from Mexico. After that, the top five countries of origin were El Salvador, Guatemala, Honduras and South Korea.”

Fact check: Are DACA recipients stealing jobs away from other Americans? (NPR, 9/6/17) That’s what Attorney General Jeff Sessions said – but he’s wrong.

“The short answer: On a large scale or in the long run, there is no reason to think DACA recipients have a major deleterious effect on American workers’ employment chances. What’s more, some economists believe DACA is actually a boost to the economy.”

5 DACA myths debunked (CNN, 9/6/17) DACA recipients have no pathway to citizenship. They do pay taxes. They do not get Medicaid and Obamacare. They are not going to college for free. They are not stealing jobs from American citizens.

Other immigration news

How do standards measure up at immigration detention centers? A special report (Politifact, 9/6/17) Politifact reviews years of reports showing neglect, abuse, and inadequate conditions at immigration detention centers. Only 31 of 201 authorized adult detention facilities and 213 other facilities follow 2011 standards issued by ICE.

The Health 202: Immigrants’ health care problems are about to get worse (Washington Post, 9/6/17)

“The 23 million immigrants who aren’t citizens — which includes the 11 million who are undocumented — are significantly more likely to be uninsured than U.S. citizens.”

New St. Paul skyway project explores ‘home’ for 58 immigrants (Star Tribune, 9/6/17)

“For at least the next six months, the project will display the personal stories of people from Romania, Kenya, Laos, Sweden and dozens of other countries to leave one home in search of another. Their own words accompany the photographs:

“Home is a place of being anchored down. I feel I contribute to the society through my job and volunteering in the local Muslim community. Having come from a war-ridden place, security is important and it means not being attacked, robbed, or fearing that bombs would fall on your house.” — Tamim Saidi, Afghanistan.”

Immigration policy: Every arrival begins a legacy (Star Tribune, 9/6/17)

“My grandpa died in 1976. Without him, I couldn’t be who I am. Without anyone in my wild mix — and without their being welcomed, however hesitantly, at some point in this great country of ours — I couldn’t be me.”

 

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About Mary Turck

News Day, written by Mary Turck, analyzes, summarizes, links to, and comments on reports from news media around the world, with particular attention to immigration, education, and journalism. Fragments, also written by Mary Turck, has fiction, poetry and some creative non-fiction. Mary Turck edited TC Daily Planet, www.tcdailyplanet.net, from 2007-2014, and edited the award-winning Connection to the Americas and AMERICAS.ORG, in its pre-2008 version. She is also a recovering attorney and the author of many books for young people (and a few for adults), mostly focusing on historical and social issues.
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