ICE

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A group of New Mexico prosecutors, defense attorneys and advocates filed a lawsuit in federal district court Wednesday to block Immigration and Customs Enforcement agents from arresting undocumented immigrants in and around New Mexico courthouses, saying those arrests violate federal law and impede access to justice.

Hannah Colton / KUNM

Communities across the country are demanding justice for people killed by police. In Albuquerque, the SouthWest Organizing Project is creating a mural to honor victims of police shootings and other forms of state violence in New Mexico. On Friday, organizers invited community members to gather and write the names of victims. KUNM spoke with some folks there. 

Hannah Colton / KUNM

Episode 48 dives back into how the pandemic is affecting people experiencing homelessness. KUNM's Hannah Colton goes further into the story of the city breaking up encampments, despite the CDC advising against it during this time, and she brings us the perspective of Cypher Johnson, who's passing through Albuquerque and spending time on the streets. We talk to people who work with unsheltered folks around the state about what an outbreak at a shelter would mean for the whole community, about what needs to change right now—and what needs to change in the future. We also hear from the Albuquerque Police Department and the Las Cruces Police Department about how coronavirus has changed things for them philosophically and practically. 

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Reports are emerging of people held in crowded ICE detention facilities around the country testing positive for the coronavirus. In New Mexico, a man who'd left the Otero County Processing Center told KVIA-TV this week that a young boy inside had contracted COVID-19, a report that was later confirmed by ICE officials. Immigrant advocates in New Mexico and elsewhere have been calling on ICE since March to create plans to prevent outbreaks and to release people most at risk of serious illness. On Wednesday, U.S. Representative Deb Haaland joined a coalition of Congress members in calling for the release of non-violent people who are being detained.

Bryce Dix / KUNM

Episode 39 is focused on migrants, asylum-seekers and refugees in our communities, and on Immigration and Customs Enforcement detention centers, which are often overcrowded around the United States and are criticized for bad medical care. ICE announced it will review cases one-by-one and release vulnerable people. Officials and advocates say that's not anywhere near fast enough as COVID cases are cropping up around the country in ICE detention centers, and outbreaks in them could overwhelm regional hospitals.

Ed Williams / KUNM

Thousands of people have come forward with complaints about sexual abuse inside immigration detention facilities—including children. But few have ever been investigated.

Now, organizations representing survivors are demanding that detention centers enforce federal laws against abuse of prisoners and stop separating families, which they say makes kids vulnerable to assault.

KUNM spoke with longtime advocate and attorney Claire Harwell of the New Mexico Coalition of Sexual Assault Programs. Harwell says asylum-seekers are often fleeing sexual violence in other countries before they’re locked up in U.S. facilities, where they may face the the same violence.

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After an inspector general report found "dangerous overcrowding" at Border Patrol facilities, the House oversight committee is holding a hearing about conditions for detained migrants. Watch the hearing live.

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President Donald Trump just launched his re-election campaign, and he also Tweeted that starting next week, there would be mass arrests based on immigration violations. This comes as detention centers around the country are over-capacity and accused of violating basic human rights. Families in New Mexico are feeling the impact of that familiar and uncertain threat.

Ed Williams / KUNM

Nationally, Immigration and Customs Enforcement held 42,000 people in custody on average on any given day last year. People leaving ICE detention often say conditions were bad, and they were abused or didn’t get enough to eat. Some New Mexico lawmakers are carrying a bill that might create a window into ICE facilities here.

Alma Rosa Silva-Banuelos

Central American transgender women who are seeking asylum in the U.S. are sent by immigration officials to a detention pod in rural New Mexico. This year, volunteers from many organizations here came together to help them. The work started as kind of a scramble, but over time, quick coordination has smoothed out.

Marisa Demarco / KUNM

Hundreds of students around the state are affected by the Trump administration’s amped-up immigration rhetoric, and teachers are seeing the effects in their classrooms. The New Mexico Dream Team held a training for University of New Mexico faculty, instructors and staff on Friday.

Picture: Irving Mondragon (Diversidad sin fronteras)

Sat. 8/4, 3p: An interview with Charlotte -who fled from Honduras-, and Nakai -an activist and doctoral candidate at Harvard University-  about the 2018 Transgender Caravan of asylum seekers coming from Central America to the US.

Marisa Demarco / KUNM

People detained by Immigration and Customs Enforcement around the country describe harsh conditions and even abuse inside facilities. Transgender women seeking asylum in the United States are often held by ICE in a separate pod at a detention center near Grants, New Mexico. On Friday, July 27, advocates saw a small victory when some women were released.

Marisa Demarco / KUNM

Dozens of transgender people seeking asylum were part of the caravan that crossed the border about a month ago. One woman was transferred to a detention facility in New Mexico, and she died days later. Demonstrators gathered at the Immigration and Customs Enforcement field office in Albuquerque Wednesday afternoon to march, chant and demand answers.

Marisa Demarco / KUNM

There are about 1,400 Iraqi nationals in the United States who could be sent back to Iraq any day now under new Trump Administration policies no matter how long they’ve lived here. 

One refugee in Albuquerque has been fearing his time is up in the country, even though he spent years helping the U.S. military during the Iraq War. Immigration authorities have ordered him to report to their offices for removal on Thursday, July 13. 

Marisa Demarco / KUNM

U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement under President Donald Trump is changing how it effectively prioritizes immigrants for deportation. Immigrant rights advocates in New Mexico say these days, anyone can become a target. That unpredictability is forcing people to make some hard choices. 

Judge Prohibits Jail From Holding Prisoners For ICE

Mar 28, 2017
my_southborough via Creative Commons / Creative Commons

President Trump’s administration this month began publishing a weekly report of local and state law enforcement agencies that have refused to detain people so that federal agents can determine their legal status.

But a federal judge in New Mexico recently approved a settlement that prohibits the San Juan County jail from doing just that - holding inmates past their release date at the request of federal agents.

Albuquerque Church Offers Woman Sanctuary From ICE

Mar 14, 2017
New Mexico Coalition For Immigrant Justice / Creative Commons

Last week, an Albuquerque church offered sanctuary to an Albuquerque grandmother under threat of deportation.  Her name is Emma – she’s originally from Honduras and she’s been living in the U.S. for 25 years.  The Albuquerque church is one of over a dozen churches in the nation to provide sanctuary to an immigrant.  

Corrections Department Gives Inmate Info To ICE

Mar 10, 2017
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Governor Susana Martinez on Friday ordered the state corrections department to work with the federal government on immigration enforcement. President Trump’s Administration requested a list of foreign-born inmates late last month as part of a push to deport people who are in the U.S. illegally.

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U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement raids in cities across the country are alarming immigrant communities. Hundreds of Albuquerque community members found solace with each other Friday night at a candle-lit St. Paul Lutheran Church.

Marisa Demarco / KUNM

After the election, the University of New Mexico’s president issued a message acknowledging that students are feeling unsafe and urging people to respect each other. But hundreds of faculty members, students and even administrators are saying that’s not enough.