Friday, September 12, 2008

Bishops Ask Homeland Security to Stop ICE Raids

Bishop John C. Wester, as chair of the Bishops' Committee on Migration, has asked the Department of Homeland Security (DHS) to stop the worksite raids of its Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE). Such raids have "humanitarian costs , , , unacceptable in a civilized society". He specifically points to the burdens of family separation and asked that, if DHS continues the raids, it
  • refrain from raiding churches or places that provide humanitarian aid to migrants,
  • release caregivers so they may provide for dependents,
  • provide access to legal representation to detainees,
  • allow for families to locate relatives after raids.
  • allow families to communicate with detainees.
The raids have demonstrated the power of the state to enforce the law, but Bishop Wester writes it does "little . . . to solve the broader challenge of Illegal Immigration." It only reveals "the failure" of the current immigration law. (See press release and the statement at USCCB website.)

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