Things That Matter

The 2020 Census Will Include A Question Asking About Citizenship And It Will Be Disastrous For Our Community

@luizfernandovl / Twitter

On April 1, 2020, the U.S. government will tally all of the people that live in the United States, but not everyone will be counted. The purpose of the Census — which take place every ten years — is to properly account for everyone that lives in the U.S. in order to have a correct figure in place for funding purposes, research, and have accurate statistics of all residents.

A new study reveals that more than 4 million people will go uncounted in the 2020 Census and that would be disastrous for the country.

Credit: @mariancruz905 / Twitter

The Urban Institute, a nonpartisan organization, showed that the leading group that could be lost within the Census would be black and brown people.

“Every American should be counted, regardless of race, ethnicity, age, income or where they live,” Diana Elliott, a senior research associate at the Urban Institute, said in a statement to NBC News. “The Census is a key building block of our government and our society at the national, state, and local level. Miscounts of this magnitude will have real consequences for the next decade, including how we fund programs for children and invest in our infrastructure.”

At the core of the issue is that some communities are difficult to reach while others won’t fill it out due to fear of discrimination or deportation.

Credit: @desiderioDC / Twitter

The report shows that most communities with white people are estimated to be over-counted by Census workers, where black and brown communities go under-counted.

It’s also no secret that the Trump administration seeks to add a citizenship question as well, which is currently under ligation. The Trump Administration has said they added that question in order to avoid voter fraud, but Latinx and immigration advocates the question will hurt states where immigrants and undocumented people live.

“These newly discovered documents clearly show the Trump Administration intended for the 2020 Census’ citizenship question to intimidate communities of color and silence us from participating in our democracy,” Democratic lawmakers said in a press release statement. “Furthermore, throughout the legal fights since Commerce Secretary Wilbur Ross’ decision to add the citizenship question, this Administration has intentionally lied to the American people and Congress about their dubious intentions for altering the Census. The proof of their motivation has come to light, and it demonstrates with incontrovertible evidence that this Administration is working to undermine the foundations of our government. The results of the Census will change the course of our country for the next decade. It will decide how much federal funding communities receive, who is represented in Congress, and what kind of country the next generation inherits.”

The report shows the states that face the most discrepancies include California, Texas, New Mexico, Nevada, Georgia, New York, and Florida.

Credit: @votolatino / Twitter

Here are some of their key findings:

  • The undercount of the US population overall in 2020 could range from 0.27 percent in the low-risk scenario to 1.22 percent in the high-risk scenario.
  • Some states face a greater risk of undercounts because they have large populations of historically undercounted groups. California has the greatest undercount risk, with projected 2020 undercounts ranging from 0.95 percent (low risk) to 1.98 percent (high risk). Other states at risk for serious undercount are Texas, New Mexico, Nevada, Georgia, New York, and Florida.
  • The miscounts may disproportionately affect some groups more than others. Black and Hispanic/Latinx-identified individuals in the high-risk scenario could be undercounted nationally by 3.68 percent and 3.57 percent, respectively.
  • White, non-Hispanic/Latinx individuals could be overcounted nationally by 0.03 percent in the high-risk scenario. States with the greatest potential for overcounts include Vermont, West Virginia, Maine, New Hampshire, and Montana. These states have large populations of white, non-Hispanic/Latinx residents.
  • Children younger than 5, who have historically been undercounted, are at risk of being undercounted by as much as 6.31 percent in the high-risk scenario.

READ: Latinos Face Severe Underrepresentation With 2020 Census, Here’s Why That Matters

Captain Who Drove Truck Through ICE Protesters Placed On Administrative Leave And His Name And Face Are All Over Twitter

Things That Matter

Captain Who Drove Truck Through ICE Protesters Placed On Administrative Leave And His Name And Face Are All Over Twitter

People across the U.S. are stunned by a viral Twitter video showing a contract Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) guard driving his pick-up truck through a crowd of protesters. The protesters, part of the Jewish activist organization Never Again Action, posted videos of the assault on Twitter and it has sparked outrage at the actions of law enforcement at the scene. Here’s what happened.

Captain Thomas Woodworth has been placed on administrative leave following the incident, according to authorities.

Credit: @theplaceilove / Twitter

“The incident which occurred last night is currently being investigated by the Rhode Island State Police,” a statement to the Boston Globe read. “Donald W. Wyatt Detention Facility Warden Daniel Martin is also conducting a top to bottom review of the incident, Wyatt correctional officers’ response, and the Wyatt’s protocols regarding protest activities outside of the facility. Captain Thomas Woodworth has been placed on administrative leave pending the results of the independent investigation being conducted by the Rhode Island State Police, and the Wyatt’s internal investigation.”

People are spreading his information as far and wide as they can to shame him for his actions.

Credit: @AntiFlashGordon / Twitter

The video has been shared all over social media and people have reacted with shock and anger. Other activists are pointing out that the use of a car to ram protesters is becoming a more common thought and occurrence than in recent history.

Others are using the video as a moment to question what exactly is happening inside the detention centers they are protesting.

Credit: @nat_lern / Twitter

People have been trying to get people’s attention to the humanitarian crisis in the detention centers. There is a real concern that if guards can run their car through a group of lawful protesters, what are they doing to migrants in detention?

Activists captured video of an ICE guard using his pick-up truck to break through a group of protesters in Rhode Island.

Credit: @NeverAgainActn / Twitter

Protesters were stationed outside of the Donald W. Wyatt Detention Facility in Rhode Island. During the protest, a pick-up truck drives up the protesters and honks the horn before driving through the crowd of protesters. However, the truck was not the only time the protesters were assaulted during the protest.

During the incident, law enforcement at the scene used pepper spray on the protesters to break up the crowd.

Credit: @NeverAgainActn / Twitter

“We will not be deterred by the violence that was taken against us last night,” a spokesperson for Never Again Action told NBC News. “People are being harmed in ICE custody every day. This is exactly why we are doing what we’re doing.”

People are horrified at the blatant attack on peaceful protesters.

Credit: @mcastimovies / Twitter

The video is a chilling reminder of the violence we have seen against protesters in recent times. Two years ago, the world watched in shock as a white supremacist ran his car into a crowd of protesters in Charlottesville, Virginia during the Unite the Right rally. The attack claimed one life, Heather Heyer, in the name of hate. Fortunately, no one was seriously injured during the incident on Wednesday night.

Five people were hospitalized after the guard ran over protesters.

Two people were hospitalized because of the truck driving into the crowd and three people were hospitalized for the pepper spray. The whole incident has not deterred the organization from standing against ICE and its detention practices.

READ: More Than 100 Protesters Were Arrested In New York City For Blocking One Of The Busiest Streets In The City

An Ex-ICE Attorney Is Calling Out The Agency For Using False Evidence To Deport And Detain Innocent Migrants

Things That Matter

An Ex-ICE Attorney Is Calling Out The Agency For Using False Evidence To Deport And Detain Innocent Migrants

A former Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) lawyer has revealed that in several cases ICE agents corroborated against immigrants in order to achieve their deportation. In an in-depth interview with ProPublica, a nonprofit newsroom that investigates those on power, Laura Peña revealed many of the behind the scenes details of the how the government agency pursued the deportation of migrants and asylum seekers. The investigative piece highlights some of the trials and tribulations that Peña has lived through as a legal assistant to the agency where, in different cases, there was a common factor: lack of evidence to accuse immigrants of any fault that prompts their deportation.

Now she’s getting to tell her side of the story. 

Who is Laura Peña and how did she end up working for ICE?

Credit: @ProPublica / Twitter

Growing up in Harlingen, Texas, which is close to Mexico, Peña was immersed in the migrant community. Living so close to the U.S-Mexico border gave her a unique perspective on what many Latino migrants endured. She went to school with friends who were undocumented and friends whose parents also worked for the Border Patrol. After graduating high school she left the area and would get a job in the State Department. 

She would eventually take her career path in the same footsteps as her father to become a lawyer. After graduating from Georgetown Law, she saw that ICE was looking for trial attorneys but the opportunity wasn’t as easy as it seemed. Peña wasn’t sold on the concept of helping see migrants get deported, especially growing up in a migrant community herself. Family and friends were in disagreement with the thought of her working on behalf of ICE. 

 But her father, who himself was a struggling attorney, consoled her and reassured her not to pass up an opportunity like this. “Do what you need to do,” he counseled her. “Don’t worry about what others think.”

 A fellow mentor, who was also an immigration attorney, also encouraged her to take the position. He said this could be an opportunity to take the job and try to make the government agency more humane. “We need people of your mindset working on the government’s side,” she told Peña.

Peña was hired in 2014 as an ICE attorney which would be the start of a turbulent and controversial time working on behalf of the agency. These are some of the stories she told ProPublica about her experiences. 

Credit: @HispanicCaucus / Twitter

One of the mentioned cases in the investigative piece was that of Carlos, a migrant who applied for political asylum. As soon as he made his request, border and immigration agents accused him of being a member of the notoriously famous MS-13 gang in El Salvador, so this made Carlos not eligible to enter to the United States. 

This is where Peña, who followed the case, started to see the ugly true side of ICE. She did not find any semblance of a connection between Carlos and the gang, not even tattoos, that are a key part of the gang’s look or even criminal record in his own country. To the contrary, Carlos even carried an official letter from the Ministry of Justice of El Salvador certifying and clearing him of ever setting foot in a jail cell. Peña demanded proof from immigration agents that he was connected to the gang but did not obtain any. Despite the lack of any evidence of his gang affiliation, Carlos did not obtain his asylum.

Another case she revealed was that of a 6-month-old baby who was scheduled to be deported because he had been separated from his mother. Peña would eventually reunite the child with his mother but the woman was accused of carrying a false document. The immigration judge used that against her and would then order her child’s removal from the country.

This would all lead to Peña taking a step back from the agency. She now works pro bono with clients seeking asylum at the border. 

Credit: @bykenarmstrong / Twitter

All of this immigration work would overwhelm Peña over time, especially during the Trump administration’s family separation policy went into effect in Spring 2018. “Everything was stacked against the immigrants. Most couldn’t afford to hire an attorney. Few would ever win their cases.”

Peña would go on to acknowledge that the immigration system refuses to provide due process to an immigrant. but also realizes that there’s not much that could be done there. She is now working pro bono as a visiting attorney for the Texas Civil Rights Project, helping migrants with asylum cases. She now hopes she can properly bring justice to the countless of people that have been wrongly deported or separated at the hands of ICE. 

READ: This New Border Wall Mural Features QR Codes That You Can Scan To Hear Emotional Stories Of Deported Migrants

Paid Promoted Stories