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Opposition keeps growing against immigration detention center in Broward

4 Aug

MEDIA ADVISORY: Thursday, August 4th, 2011

MEDIA CONTACT: Natalia Jaramillo (786) 317-3524

 

Opposition keeps growing against immigration detention center in Broward

Residents from Southwest Ranches, Pembroke Pines and Weston to demand answers at Town Council Meeting

What:             Press Conference and Town Council Meeting, Southwest Ranches

When:            Thursday, August 4th

                        Press Conference at 6:30 pm

                        Town Council Meeting at 7:00 pm

Where:          Southwest Ranches Town Hall, 6591 SW 160 Avenue, Southwest Ranches, FL 33331

 Why:             As the time nears for a definite approval to build a private immigration detention center in Southwest Ranches, concern among residents keeps growing. On July 16, over 150 residents converged Sawgrass Community Church to express their opposition. And this Thursday, August 4th, residents will attend the Southwest Ranches Town Council meeting hoping to receive a response to so many unanswered questions and deliver a petition against the detention center.

“Many residents have approached their elected officials asking for explanations without any result. The Town Council members respond that they are under a cone of silence and told residents to call Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) for information,” says Kathy Bird, organizer for the Florida Immigrant Coalition.

The detention center will be one of the largest in the country, with up to 1,800 beds. It will be built and run by Corrections Corporation of America (CCA), the largest private prison company in the nation.  CCA makes billions in profits by contracting with ICE to run detention facilities. CCA signed a contract with Southwest Ranches in 2005 to bring a private prison to Southwest Broward.  This deal mandates that the Town of Southwest Ranch pay CCA $150,000 per year, and in return receive a percentage for every immigrant detained.

“If the town has already signed, they should be able to respond the inquiries from the area residents,” continues Bird.

In a preliminary phone survey* completed by 229 residents of Southwest Ranches, 89% (203) did not agree with having a detention center in their community.

Residents from Pembroke Pines are also joining the voices of opposition, and have been invited to attend the Town Council meeting this coming Thursday. The detention center will not only be visible from their homes, but it will also use their streets, fire department, water and sewer. Officials from Pembroke Pines and Southwest Ranches have already signed agreements earlier this year for Pembroke Pines to provide these services to the proposed detention site which is located adjacent to them.

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*The survey was coordinated by the Florida Immigrant Coalition

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Obama Resumes Deportation of Hatian Nationals

26 Jan



the U.S. government resumed its deportation of Haitian nationals convicted of criminal offenses. Despite petitions and objections filed by civil and human rights groups to halt detentions, 27 Haitian nationals have been deported thus far.

Immigration and Customs Enforcement, ICE, has justified these deportations as removal of criminal elements from the United States. While the Department of Homeland Security has stated that only Haitians with criminal records will be removed, detentions have occurred for “offenses” that run the gamut, including traffic violations.

“It is hypocritical that the same day that the Department of Homeland Security announced it would resume deportations to Haiti, a travel warning was issued by the State Department,” said Francesca Menes, Community Organizer with the Florida Immigrant Coalition (FLIC), “The message the U.S. is sending is that it is acceptable to turn our backs on those who are living in inhumane conditions, but it’s not acceptable for U.S. Citizens to be present in similar conditions.”

In what could be all but called a criminal act, Haitian nationals are returned to a country that continues to languish after the hurricanes and floods of 2008 and the devastating earthquake of January 12, 2010 which killed 230,000 people.  Deportees are returning to political instability, crumbling infrastructure and inhumane living conditions.

1.2 million people continue living in tent camps. The lack of proper sanitation and medical care at these camps led to a cholera outbreak that bared itself in December of 2010 and has since claimed 3,889 lives and affected 194,000 nationwide.   As homelessness and joblessness persist throughout the island, violence against women, rapes and child prostitution and human trafficking have increased.

Moreover, hundreds of Haitians have been relocated to prisons across Louisiana as part of the deportation process to await removal. Despite the upheavals occurring in Haiti, boats are also being driven back by the U.S. Coast Guard.

The deportations of Haitian nationals further delay Haiti’s recovery as potential workers that could send millions into Haiti through remittances are returned to their country of origin. Florida will languish without their contributions. Additionally, 55,000 Haitians with approved family petitions remain separated from their U.S. based relatives due to U.S. visa backlogs and bureaucracy that shows no signs of speeding up.

“These illogical attitudes underscore the racism perpetuated upon Haitians, at home and abroad, said Isabel Vinent, Deputy Director of FLIC, “The administration has to stop the deportations. Not even 12 months have gone by after the earthquake and conditions in Haiti have only deteriorated. If special provisions and considerations have been provided to others fleeing from oppression, persecution and disaster, the people of Haiti should also receive the same treatment.”
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Administracion de Obama reanuda deportaciones de ciudadanos haitianos

el gobierno de EE.UU. reanudó la deportación de ciudadanos haitianos identificados como criminales. A pesar de las peticiones y objeciones presentadas por los grupos de derechos civiles y ONGs para poner fin a las detenciones, 27 personas han sido deportados hasta la fecha.

ICE  ha justificado estas deportaciones como la eliminación de los elementos criminales de los Estados Unidos. El Departamento de Seguridad Nacional ha afirmado que sólo los haitianos con antecedentes penales serán deportados. Sin embargo, se han llevado acabo multiples detenciones por infracciones menores, incluyendo violaciónes de tráfico.

“Es increible que el mismo día que el Departamento de Seguridad Nacional anunció que reanudaría las deportaciones a Haití, una advertencia de viaje fue emitida por el Departamento de Estado,” dijo Francesca Menes, organizadora de la comunidad con la Coalición de Inmigrantes de Florida (FLIC), “El mensaje que EE.UU. está enviando es que es aceptable darle la espalda a aquellos que viven en condiciones inhumanas, pero no es aceptable que los ciudadanos de EE.UU. esten presentes en condiciones similares. ”

En lo que podría ser interpretado como un acto criminal, las personas de origen haitianos son devueltas a un país que sigue languideciendo después de los huracanes y las inundaciones del 2008 ; un devastador terremoto del 12 de enero de 2010 que mató a 230.000 personas y a la inestabilidad política.

1,2 millones de personas aun siguen viviendo en tiendas de campaña. Las condiciones insalubres y la falta de atención médica en estos campos condujo a un brote de cólera que se desató en diciembre del 2010 y desde entonces ha reclamado 3.889 vidas y afectó a 194.000. Y a lo largo de la isla aun persiste la falta de vivienda y el desempleo, la violencia contra las mujeres, las violaciones y la prostitución infantil y el trafico humano ha aumentado.

Por otra parte, cientos de haitianos han sido trasladados a prisiones en Louisiana a la espera de expulsion del país, como parte del proceso de deportación. A pesar de los trastornos que ocurren en Haití, las balsas encaminadas a los EE.UU. también están siendo rechazados por la Guardia Costera norteamericana.
Las deportaciones de nacionales haitianos demora aun más la recuperación de Haití, ya que potenciales trabajadores que pudieran enviar millones en remesas a Haití son devueltos a su país de origen. Mientras tanto, Florida languidecen sin sus contribuciones. Además, 55.000 haitianos con peticiones de asilo aprobadas permanecen separadas de sus familiares que viven en los EE.UU., debido a los retrasos visa de EE.UU. y la burocracia que no muestra signos de aceleración.

“Estas actitudes ilógicas subrayado el racismo perpetúa a los haitianos, en su casa y en el extranjero, dijo Isabel Vinent, Director Adjunto de la oficina de FLIC,” La administración tiene que parar las deportaciones. Ni siquiera 12 meses han transcurrido después del terremoto y las condiciones en Haití sólo han empeorado. Si las disposiciones especiales y consideraciones han sido prestados a otros que huyen de la opresión, la persecución y el desastre, el pueblo de Haití también deben recibir el mismo trato. ”

 

Context Analysis: Get to know a Racial Profiling Bill!

26 Jan

Filed in December by State Sen. Mike Bennett (R-Bradenton),  SB 136 is a proposal that, if passed into law, would allow law enforcement officers to ask detainees arrested during a lawful detention for their immigration documents if they are suspected of residing in the country illegally. While the law prohibits racial profiling and purports to only punish criminals, the bill would penalize legal residents who do not carry proper documentation with fines of up to $100 and even a 20 day jail sentence.

“We don’t want to become another Arizona. This type of bill has shown that it not only had a negative impact on immigrants but on the economy,” said Jonathan Fried, member of WeCount! “Criminalizing one sector of community is not the solution to solving Miami’s problems.”

The senator stated that one of the goals of the bill is to deport 1,300 undocumented immigrants found in the state prison system, convicted on drug possession and other non-violent and non-sexual offenses who cost taxpayers $20,000 a year.  Additionally, the bill would target the thousands of Puerto Rican and Cuban immigrants residing here legally with unjustified fines and detentions while overlooking.

While the bill is still in its draft stages, the goal of targeting, detaining and deporting all undocumented immigrant is highly implicit; a goal that, if achieved, would cost the state of Florida $43.9 billion in economic activity.

“This type of bill reflects the ugly and overt anti-immigrant policies that have been culled by an out-of-touch legislature that, rather than focus on Florida’s real issues like unemployment and the lowest per capita spending rates on education in the nation, choose to scapegoat minority communities and criminalize the poor,” said Maria Rodriguez, Executive Director of FLIC.

What can you do?
Contact your State Senator (www.flsenate.gov) or your State Representative (www.myfloridahouse.gov) and tell them that this bill is bad for Florida.  WE ARE ALL FLORIDA! Let them know that:

1. These bills WILL cause racial profiling and WILL target people because they are brown or “look” immigrant.  No matter what any provision of the bill says.  It is impossible to enforce the laws in this bill without racial profiling or forcing every foreign businessperson, tourist, visitor to prove their status or risk going to jail.  The original version of this bill excused Canadians and most European immigrants from having to prove their legal status because it didn’t want them to feel “uncomfortable.”

2. This bill will destroy Florida’s economy.  Florida has thousands of tourists, businesspeople, and visitors that come from Latin America and the Caribbean to visit, shop, and spend money.  All it takes is one unfair incident to scare thousands away.  There have been dozens of cases of US citizens and legal residents unlawfully arrested in Arizona.  Arizona has already lost $140 million dollars in convention business alone.  Which industry do you want to lose money?  Which jobs and investments do you want to see leave our state?

3.This bill will destroy law enforcement relationship with immigrants.  Victims of crime, exploitation, and human trafficking will be unwilling to report crimes to the police.  Maricopa County, Arizona has the highest kidnapping rate in the country because immigrants are too afraid of the Sheriff.  Is that the Florida we want?
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Analysis: Conozca una ley de Perfilamiento Racial

Presentado en diciembre por el senador estatal Mike Bennett (R-Bradenton), la SB 136 es una propuesta que, si es aprobada como ley, permitiría que la policía pida documentos comprobando el estatus legal de  individuos detenidos durante una detención legal si se sospecha que residen en el país ilegalmente. Aunque la ley prohíbe la discriminación racial y pretende sancionar sólo los delincuentes, el proyecto de ley penalizaría a los residentes legales que no tienen la documentación adecuada con multas de hasta $ 100 e incluso una sentencia de cárcel de 20 días.

“No queremos que la Florida se convierta en otra Arizona. Este tipo de proyecto de ley ha demostrado que no solo impacta negativamente a los inmigrantes, sino tambien a la economía ” dijo Jonathan Fried, miembro de WeCount! “La criminalización de un sector de la comunidad no es la solución para resolver los problemas del estado.”

El senador señaló que uno de los objetivos del proyecto de ley es de deportar a 1.300 inmigrantes indocumentados que se encuentran en el sistema penitenciario del estado, condenados por posesión de drogas y otros cargos de crimenes no violentos y no sexuales, que les han costado a residentes $ 20.000 al año. Además, la ley perjudicaría a miles de inmigrantes puertorriqueños y cubanos que residen aquí legalmente con multas y detenciones injustificadas.

Aunque el proyecto está todavía en sus etapas de proyecto, el objetivo de detener y deportar a todos los inmigrantes indocumentados, especificamente de procedencia latina, es muy implícita. De lograrse, esta ley le costaría al estado de la Florida 43900 millones dólares en actividad económica perdida departe de inversionistas internacionales que puedieran temer de las repercuciones que esta ley tendría sobre sus negocios.

“Este tipo de proyecto de ley refleja las políticas encontra de los inmigrantes. En lugar de centrarse en los verdaderos problemas de la Florida como la alta taza de desempleo, nuestros representantes han elegido criminzalizar y explotar a las comunidades minoritarias y pobres,” dijo María Rodríguez, directora ejecutiva de FLIC.

¿Qué puede hacer?
Contacte a su senador estatal (www.flsenate.gov) u oficinas del Estado (www.myfloridahouse.gov) y diganles que este proyecto de ley es malo para la Florida. TODOS SOMOS LA FLORIDA! Hágales saber que:

1. Estos proyectos de ley utilizan la discriminación racial y se dirigen encontra de la gente morena o que lucen como inmigrantes. No importa lo que cualquiera de las incarnaciones del proyecto de ley diga. Es imposible cumplir este proyecto de ley sin el perfilamiento racial o sin forzar a todos los personas de negocios extranjeros y turistas de comprobar su estatus legal o arriesgar ser encarcelados. La versión original de este proyecto de ley excusaba a la mayoria de inmigrantes canadienses y europeos de tener que comprobar su estatus legal porque no quiería que se sintieran “incómodos.”

2. Este proyecto de ley destruirá la economía de la Florida. Florida tiene a miles de turistas, empresarios y visitantes que vienen de América Latina y el Caribe a turistear, comprar e invertir dinero. Todo lo que necesita es un incidente injusto que asuste a miles. Han habido decenas de casos de ciudadanos norteamericanos. y residentes legales detenidos ilegalmente en Arizona. Arizona ya perdio $ 140 millones de dólares de negocio de convenciones. En estos dorados tiempos económicos, que industria quiere perder más dinero? ¿Qué puestos de trabajo y las inversiones quisieran ver salir de nuestro estado?

3.La presente destruirá la relación de la policía con los inmigrantes. Las víctimas de la delincuencia, la explotación y violencia domestica no estarán dispuest@s a denunciar delitos a la policía. El condado de Maricopa, Arizona tiene la mayor tasa de secuestros en el país porque los inmigrantes tienen miedo del alguacil. Es esta la Florida que queremos?

 

A New Legislative Reality and Gearing up for a Campaign Blitz: In 2011, WE ARE ALL FLORIDA!

26 Jan

It’s only been one month since 2011 started and we’re already faced with new challenges. The change in leadership at a  has ushered in more legal hurdles for immigrants state and national level. In Florida, several Arizona-style racial profiling bills have been drafted, including SB 136 filed by Sen. Mike Bennett (R-Bradenton and Senate President pro-tempore), HB 237 by Rep. William Snyder (R-Stuart and Head of the Judiciary Committee), and the Florida Immigrantion Enforcement Act, pushed by former Attorney General Bill McCollum in 2010; the latter was considered too soft on immigration reform by current Governor Rick Scott, who has since signed an executive order requiring all agencies under his control to use the unreliable E-verify system.

Despite the mounting pressure against us, we’ve made our message very clear throughout the state: “We Are Florida!”. From student, to farm worker, to small business owner we’ve shown up to public hearings with power and grace. In Martin County, of the 38 people in the speaker’s line up, 30 spoke against these laws. In Manatee County, nearly 100 people showed up for a vigil outside the hearing.

These actions are only the beginning of the “WE ARE FLORIDA!” Campaign. Here at FLIC, we’re gearing up for a communications and organizing fight that will mobilize us against the opposition. We are Florida! We are a mixture of races and cultures. This is who we are. We value and take pride of the contribution of all communities, including immigrants, who have worked hard to bring progress to our state.Our representatives need to know that Floridians are hurting because of the lack of jobs and the housing crisis, and we can only fix these problems through unity and not division. Immigration is not a problem but a solution. Floridians need to stick together to solve the real problems of this state like we always have.

“Bringing racial profiling laws like Arizona’s to Florida hurts the values of equity and opportunity for all this state was built on, by attacking its own people,” said Maria Rodrigues, Executive Director of FLIC, “It is impossible to enforce the laws in this bill without turning all residents, citizens, tourists and businesspeople that look “foreign” into suspicious criminals. They need to know that we are all Florida and that we all contribute to the value of this state.”
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Una Nueva Realidad Legislativa y Una Nueva Campana: en el 2011, NOSOTROS SOMOS LA FLORIDA!

Sólo ha pasado un mes desde que comenzó 2011 y ya estamos enfrentando a nuevos desafíos. El cambio de liderazgo al nivel estatal y nacional ha promovido la introducción de más obstáculos legales los inmigrantes. En la Florida, varios proyectos de ley estilo Arizona de perfil racial se han elaborado, incluyendo SB 136 presentada por el Senador Mike Bennett (R-Bradenton y el presidente pro tempore del Senado), HB 237 por el diputado William Snyder (R-Stuart y Jefe de la Comité Judicial), y la Ley de Aplicación de Inmigracion de la Florida, empujado por el ex Procurador General, Bill McCollum, en 2010. Este último fue considerado demasiado suave sobre la reforma migratoria por el actual gobernador Rick Scott, que ha firmado una orden ejecutiva requiriendo que todos las agencias bajo su control utilizen el sistema de E-Verify.

A pesar de la creciente presión en contra de nosotros, hemos hecho nuestro mensaje muy claro en todo el estado: “¡Somos la Florida”. Desde los estudiantes, a los trabajadores agrícolas, a los propietarios de pequeños negocios, hemos demostrado nuestro presencia en las audiencias públicas. En el condado de Martin, de las 38 personas en que participaron como portavoces, 30 se pusieron en contra de estas leyes. En el condado de Manatee, cerca de 100 personas se presentaron para una vigilia frente a la audiencia.

Estas acciones son sólo el comienzo de la Campaña “SOMOS LA FLORIDA!”. Aquí en la FLIC, nos estamos preparando para una lucha en los frentes de comunicación y mobilización en contra de la oposición. Somos de la Florida! Somos una mezcla de razas y culturas. Esto es lo que somos. Valoramos y nos sentimos orgullosos de la contribución de todas las comunidades, incluyendo las de los inmigrantes, que han trabajado tan duro.Nuestros representantes necesitan saber que los floridanos están sufriendo debido a la falta de empleos y la crisis de la vivienda, y sólo podemos solucionar estos problemas por medio  de la unidad y no por la división. La inmigración no es un problema sino una solución. Floridanos deben permanecer juntos para resolver los verdaderos problemas de este estado, como lo hemos hecho siempre.

“Traer las leyes de perfil racial estilo Arizona a la Florida lastima los valores de equidad y oportunidad para todos, que se supone que son una parte fundamental de los principios de este estado. Si estas leyes se cumplen, significa que el estado comenzaría a atacar a su propio pueblo”, dijo María Rodríguez, Directora Ejecutiva de de FLIC, “Es imposible cumplir este tipo de leyes sin tener que sospechar a todos los residentes, ciudadanos, turistas y empresarios que parecen “extranjeros”. Nuestros representantes necesitan saber que todos somos de la Florida y que todos contribuyen al valor de este estado. “

Field Report from Deland… And the “periodismo sin paredes” workshop hasn’t even started!

6 Dec

Stetson University campus is beautiful and we got it for free! I’ve been imagining Emily here. The building where we are has a big mural against homophobia and another bulletin board display against unfair immigration enforcement, coincidentally.

It’s chilly and stetson students had a party outdoors with hot chocolate and a snow machine. The dance contest consisted of people stepping into the dance floor and then being hit with snowballs! Funny.
as of Friday night we have 115 people and they are still arriving, a bus from miami with we count and swer chapters, flic staff and a few other random folks picked up people in palm beach, Miami worker center folks drove up in their own van. Jessica from Lakeland brought a crew. I saw people from Ruskin, lake worth and Apopka here too.

The Lou Dobbs workers are here sponsored by the Nation magazine. They are the landscapers of Dobbs mansion which got fired when the nation broke the story of the hypocricy of Lou Dobbs employing the undocumented.

JP and Grey did a good job in getting sponsorships, tshirts, and a raffle kicking off our second serious effort to get grassroots friendraising going.. They are both ambitious and I think make a good team. We missed JP at the staff de-brief tonight but we started after 10pm and he doesn’t do late nights–so we assigned him the worse tasks–just kidding!
–Fran did got stuck at the registration table again and missed the evening program. .I think she was a remarkable sponsorship gatherer. I was touched by JWJ kicking in $200, given their limited resources. It meant a lot and it was great to see RISEP’s logo which I kept trying to convince Alex they had sent us the wrong one until I finally believed her that they wanted to advertise the union women summer institute. Of course emily wouldn’t send the wrong one!

Going back to tonight’s opening. The first part was setting of the altar.I love my brother Badili who with 30 second notice rose to be my co-curandero, beckoning the spirits. So natural and surprisingly easy to flow with him on that.

And of course power to the people. Whenever I wonder if it’s too hokey and people are disengaged, folks step up and take it to the next level.

Paula was the first with a handmade Rosary that Americo made for her and she always carries. They are so sweet to each other. I am SO glad she decided to be here despite small but persistent disappointments with FLIC staff. She’s sleeping right next to me right now–in the other bed I mean. She definitely has lots of passion to communicate which I believe comes from a long history of work, much of it not properly acknowledged. We’re gonna work on a dinner gala in Winter Haven soon. Tirso again made me cry. Only after Romeo had gotten me chocked up. Romeo waited 18 years on one of those classic Filipino family petitions. It seems like a year ago we rejoiced about calling his number up and he still hasn’t gotten his drivers license. He seemed kind of serious and quiet today so I was glad to see him come up to the altar. Him and I are gonna try to get Winie Tang back on our Board. Going back to Tirso–he pulled out his 40 (yes 40) year old social security card.. The original one, the first one he ever got. Like a trophy of sorts always in his back pocket and all dirty from when he worked in the fields. When he came up to the altar I thought he was going to put his hat. At the Winter Haven Board meeting he laid down his cowboy hat. For two reasons: one it was a gift from his children for his birthday and two it was a work tool– as a campesino. It was lyrical.
The first time Tirso made me weep was at the Avon Park local ordinance back in 07. I was genuinely humbled. It was a deep moment of perspective–of the historical kind. I completely and categorically forgave all his growchyness which I immediately understood as earned and deserved righteousness. But I digress–back to the program. Oh no, one more thing– GLORIA Hernandez better come! She is grief stricken having lost her biological sister who was found dead in her car near Gainesville. She had driven from TX on her way to Homestead looking for work and had stopped to see her son who was in prison. Apparently she was either napping in the car when she died. Gloria also lost her friendship sister, Debbie Nichols, We Count member to heart attacks. We all lost Debbie. I still can see her made up eyes with blue eye shadow and generous smile and healthy sense of outrage. May she RIP. Gloria unbelievably also I believe lost a brother in law. I’ve been meaning to call her to make sure she’s coming but it’s been the busiest week of my life.
1,Returning from puerto rico with impending anxiety (it was a very solid great trip though)
2. FLIC Congress agenda, sponsorship and zillion minutea.
3. ACLU immigration policy deadline to get FL to step it up. (So much to say about that).
4. Debating Rep Snyder– fl 1070 bill champion at a Sun Sentinel panel and subsequent leg public hearing.
5. NPNA hosting next week immediately after congress– it’s just 12 of the most important leaders in the nation and 2 funders. The stressful part ironically is the expectation that they are coming to party town.
OMG–the most stressful thing is the damned DREAM torture. Will they just pass the DREAM ACT already. It’s been bizarre to see daily DREAM events in Miami– they are driven by deep anxiety I believ. It’s such an empotional rollercoaster I can’t even imagine being a DREAMER. It’s the adrenaline drop that dampens the light of life that I worry about.

Vickie got me a dinner plate so I could go directly to start prepping the meeting. (Dinner–OMG It was the best chile relleno I’ve had in a long time. So flavorful.) .The large hall is set up in u shape tables. Not as homey as last year’s Voices for Justice hall but equally comfortable. I was so glad to see Lourdes sitting at the table in a beautiful black blouse with red flowers. She had already diligently read thru the very detailed facilitators agenda that chabe had compiled. ..Lourdes is our Board President btw repping RCMA. She and and Tirso in his ranchero sombrero from FWAF opened up the meeting welcoming everyone. Tirso said there are 30,000 farmworkers in this area where many ornamental/ferns are grown. Many of the farmworkers here are women. Marcos and Ana from FWAF were recognized too. We didn’t see Lariza from YAYA yet but they are the other local host and will tget to acknowledge them tomorrow.

Yet again we stumbled thru the interpretation process as participants weren’t ready with their equipment when the meeting was opened. So that delayed us another 20 minutes though we just started while people got their transistors on the right frequency, etc. We can’t assume that people can interpret just because they are bilingual.

The nominations committee had a difficult decision to make that reflected the growing pains of this organization and its movement inclination. Let’s just say that it’s the tension between being principled and being pragmatic. It’s the best committee of the Board, especially since we’ve been missing Martha from Voices for Justice who was such a pillar for us.

The only reason I have the “luxury” to blog–even if my thumbs are about to fall off because I’m doing this on my bb, is that Juan is carrying a lot of the managing responsibilities. He didn’t seem happy with today because the 4 to 6 teambuilding didn’t happen as planned. Partly because we needed a cat herder which Siria has now assumed.

David on the other hand is enjoying himself! I was so glad David picked me up from FLL when I came back from PR. His MN energy and chilled attitude were medicine because I was wondering if it was prudent to be gone right before Congress. It felt like the right decision to prioritize seeing Icha (aka Alicia), my 67 year old sister to be working with David again and feel a bit guilty that Tom has been out of the picture it’s not right. They are the grandfathers of FLIC.

It’s 3 am. Gotta go. Sorry for rambling.

-Maria Rodriguez

Anti-immigrant vigilantes kill a father and daughter in Arizona

15 Jun

floresSee the story here.

Racist hate crimes against Latinos and immigrants are on the rise–and hate groups like these must be countered with common sense!