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Texas Law Enforcement Officials Targeting Low Income Mexican-American Areas and Head Start Schools Leading to Immigrant Arrests


It has come to our attention Texas Law Enforcement officials are targeting low income areas with high Mexican-American population.  Multiple checkpoints and stings are increasing, and there appears to be disparate treatment.   It is especially discouraging to see Texas Law Enforcement set up a checkpoint near Head Start schools in Edinburg, Texas, that is scaring undocumented mothers and fathers of American born children and minors.  Parents are calling into the Head Start School because they are afraid to pick up their children.  Sources say the checkpoints are leading to immigrant arrests while immigrants commute to work in the morning.

Reported checkpoints are also in the area where the young Joaquin Luna Jr. committed suicide.  Mr. Luna became the symbol of the psychological toll that being in the country illegally can take on young people.  According to Nina Hinojosa --  living family member of Joaquin Luna Jr., law enforcement officials conducted a checkpoint near his home.

No reports so far on checkpoints taking place in the wealthier areas, and we believe the Texas Law Enforcement operation could be the Texas’ reaction to the Obama administration when they issued a policy late last month telling immigration agents to try not to arrest and deport illegal immigrant parents of minor children that are born in the United States — a move that adds to the categories of people the administration is trying not to deport.  In a nine-page memo issued August, U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement said agents should use “prosecutorial discretion” to try to avoid detaining parents and, if parents are detained, agents should make sure they have the ability to visit with their children or participate in family court proceedings.

We have alerted the Department of Justice to make inquiries on disparate treatment we see occurring in Texas.

We encourage our members and immigration activists to contact the DOJ hotline phone number at 1-855-353-1010 [#1 for English #2 for Espanol] to report incidents of racial profiling.  You can also send an email to SB1070@usdoj.gov to report disparate treatment and photos of where these multiple checkpoints are occurring.

We contacted Senator Juan 'Chuy' Hinojosa’s and they are now aware of this urgent issue.   Rep. Joaquin Castro’s office has also been made aware of this issue in light of these check points leading to immigrant arrests because immigration is a federal matter.  We have seen Castro demonstrate strong leadership in fixing the broken system and both Texas leaders are looking into this situation forthwith.

We know immigration policy is protected by the Supremacy Clause of our United States Constitution, and Congress has a responsibility to address this tough issue.  The 2013 Legal immigration reform bill is a major step forward in securing our Nation because only after everyone is registered and documented will we know who is in our Nation and where we can find them.  We know that once we fix the broken immigration system, and once we document all immigrants --  then they can feel safe to help law enforcement agencies to target criminal activity without the fear of deportation when they report suspicious activity to the law enforcement authorities.  Therefore, bringing the immigrants out of the shadows will only strengthen our Nation’s security.

 photo 1148943_208126562687465_279253018_n.jpg

Joaquin Luna Jr. Memorial Bench Shared by Family Member Nina Hinojosa

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Comment Preferences

  •  Tip Jar (7+ / 0-)

    Because Tequila is stronger than Tea. The Tequila Party is a Latina-led counter movement to the Tea Party extremists.

    by Dose of Tequila on Thu Sep 26, 2013 at 10:52:06 AM PDT

  •  Oh. My. God. (3+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    freerad, viral, Rogneid

    I was a substitute teacher in Greenville, Texas, about 50 miles east of Dallas on I-30.  One of the schools I often worked at was the pre-school.  Lots of Head Start classes, for which income guidelines controlled admissions.  More than half the classrooms, though, consisted of children who mostly or totally spoke Spanish; this "language deficit" allowed them to be admitted regardless of income.  I found myself working in these bilingual classes often (because I speak Spanish poorly, always screwing up my word endings), and dearly loved those children.  More than half of all students were parent-pick-up.

    What havoc!  How horrible!  I can imagine how a 4-year-old child feels when their mom or dad didn't pick them up.  It's awful and amounts to a form of abandonment, even psychological torture.

    The last thing a child needs is to worry and stress over whether they'll go home that day.  How can anyone learn under those conditions?

    Courtesy is owed. Respect is earned. Love is given. (Unknown author, found in Guide to Texas Etiquette by Kinky Friedman)

    by marykmusic on Thu Sep 26, 2013 at 11:46:27 AM PDT

  •  Don't mean to quibble, but it isn't necessary (0+ / 0-)

    for the agents of government to know who is in the nation and where they can be found. Our agents of government are required to take the Census every ten years so they know how many people to provide for. They are not tasked with keeping track of people as if they were cattle.
    Documenting everyone is just a way to get around charges of discrimination.
    The bottom line is that agents of government are supposed to serve, not rule.

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