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Hurricane Florence Left Devastating Flooding In Its Wake But Undocumented Residents Are Too Fearful To Seek Help

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As Hurricane Florence was nearing the east coast many residents had generic fears of their homes and communities. Yet, beyond the physical destruction the storm caused, many North Carolina residents feared the loss of their loved ones. Not due to death by the storm, but due to separation by immigration officials. This fear was likely stoked by Border Patrol’s reluctance to shutter immigration checkpoints in Texas as Hurricane Harvey neared landfall. Border Patrol relented during Hurricane Harvey after mounting pressure from the public.

Undocumented immigrants in North Carolina faced mounting fear in the face of Hurricane Florence as many feared immigration officials.

Stories from Hurricane Harvey and Border Patrol trying to enforce immigration checkpoints have lingered in the undocumented immigrant psyche. The immigration officials in Texas gave in and allowed everyone to evacuate without fear of immigration checkpoints. Those fears in North Carolina’s undocumented community was exacerbated because North Carolina is one of few states with a 287(g) program. The 287(g) program allows for local law enforcement officials to enter into partnerships with federal immigration officers to detain and transfer undocumented people to detention centers.

“My worry was when someone said, ‘If you go to shelters, you have to be careful,’ someone told me they weren’t accepting people who were undocumented. But if they went, they would run the risk of being taken [from] there, and I didn’t want to run the risk with my kids,” Iris, an undocumented immigrant in North Carolina told NBC News.

This has been an overwhelming fear for people like Iris as countless undocumented immigrants have been deported from their families this year.

Wilmington Mayor Bill Saffo, the city where Iris lives, said they only wants people to be safe and nobody should be afraid to get help because of their immigration status.

“Whatever happens in respect to if there’s anybody illegal, we don’t care about that,” Saffo told NBC News. “What we care about is the preservation of life.”

The American Civil Liberties Union (ACLU) sent out a tweet saying if an individual is undocumented they shouldn’t have any worries because ICE agents “promised there won’t be sweeps” as Hurricane Florence approached. Regardless of ICE’s promise to suspend activities in light of the hurricane, the American Red Cross has made it clear it will not abide by any requests by officials to see the immigration papers of people seeking shelter.

North Carolina is one of few states that pioneered police collaboration with ICE called 287(g) programs, which allow state and local authorities to partner with immigration officials.

Now that Hurricane Florence has passed many undocumented people like Iris are afraid to seek help from emergency response agents. In an interview with Democracy Now, Laura Garduño García, a DACA recipient and North Carolina resident, said emergency response agents are coming to the state in Customs and Border Patrol vehicles and uniforms. This has caused some uneasiness among undocumented residents and in no way creates trust between community members and the federal agencies.

“It is just appalling, the total disregard to community members who are facing the devastation following the storm to then come out looking for help or looking for supplies to take back to their homes and then find everywhere in the eastern part of the state Customs and Border Patrol vehicles,” García said. “It is totally unacceptable, and FEMA should not be engaging in these tactics.”

At least 43 people have died in storm-related incidents in North Carolina, South Carolina and Virginia since the hurricane made landfall on Sept. 14.


READ: Trump Administration Transferred Nearly $10 Million From FEMA To ICE For Detention Programs

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Pregnant Mom Of Two Children Faces Deportation Back To Guatemala Without A Place To Go

Things That Matter

Pregnant Mom Of Two Children Faces Deportation Back To Guatemala Without A Place To Go

@OccupyWallStNYC | Twitter

It’s quite rare to hear of raids in sanctuary cities such as New York City or Los Angeles, but detainments do happen. In 2018, the Queens Eagle reports that 33 people were detained in Queens and 35 were detained in Brooklyn. This latest case is not only affecting the person arrested but her small children as well.

A Guatemalan pregnant woman living in Queens with her two U.S.-born children is currently facing deportation.

Alma Sofia Centeno Santiago is a 33-year-old undocumented woman that was arrested by ICE at a Queens courthouse. She was there for a court appearance in regards to a dispute with the father of her child. Some called foul when Santiago was initially arrested because ICE cannot do those inside courthouses.

“This a particularly harrowing example of the human devastation caused when ICE enters the courthouse,” Make the Road Action Managing Director Daniel Altschuler told the Eagle earlier this month.

The family of this woman is very concerned for because she’s currently very sick and, also, if deported, has nowhere to go when she gets to Guatemala.

Santiago, who’s been held at New Jersey’s Bergen County Detention Facility for two months, is reportedly experiencing extreme stomach pain and is in quarantine due to a measles outbreak at the center.

Her family and friends already fear the worst because they haven’t heard from her in a couple of days.

“We are nervous and concerned because she usually calls us,” her friend Jennifer Pacheco told the publication, “She said if she didn’t call them, they may have moved her. They told her that maybe Sunday night going into Monday, or Monday night going into Tuesday that she will probably be removed and deported.”

If deported, Santiago leaves behind an 11-year-old daughter and 3-year-old son.

READ: 11-Year-Old Undocumented Girl Is Being Forced To Leave The U.S. Without Her Family

Trump’s Children Were Called Anchor Babies By George Lopez And A Lot Of People Got Very Upset

Entertainment

Trump’s Children Were Called Anchor Babies By George Lopez And A Lot Of People Got Very Upset

georgelopez / Instagram

The term “anchor baby” is an offensive term that President Donald Trump used before his political career. The phrase refers to the children of undocumented people U.S. By law, that makes them U.S. citizens. The term, however, is Trump’s way of demonizing the offspring of immigrants. Calling anyone an anchor baby is a moot point because everyone in the United States comes from immigrants except Native Americans, and some Mexicans whose ancestors were born on U.S. soil when the land still belonged to Mexico. But all of this is to say, the majority of U.S. citizens come from immigrants. Never the less, the term was brought up recently due to the impending ICE raids.

After Trump threatened undocumented people in the U.S. with ICE raids last week, comedian George Lopez told them to detain Trump’s “anchor” babies.

“Uh, @icegov ‘if your listening’ you can find these immigrants at 1600 Pennsylvania Ave – Signed Enrique Empanada the third 😭😭 #vivalaraza #45melapela.”

The post included mariachi music and the Trump family with photoshopped sombreros.

Lopez’s use of “anchor baby” is using Trump’s words against him by suggesting that his ex-wife and current wife, both immigrants, had children in the U.S. making them citizens, which is a birthright.

Lopez is a loud opponent of Trump and his administration since before the election. It began after the then-candidate referred to Mexicans as “rapists” and “criminals.”

During his 2017 comedy special, Lopez said if he ever ran into Trump, he would sexually assault him since he said that is what Mexicans do. Lopez also pretended to urinate on Trump’s star on the Hollywood Walk of Fame with a plastic water bottle.

So did people like the joke? Hmmm…yes and no.

The joke can be taken different ways depending how you look at it. For some people, it is great to see these words weaponized against the man who is harming the community.

He’s only saying what Trump has been saying for years.

Trump and Lopez have the same logic, which makes the joke very funny. They think that using insults is the way to debate these kinds of issues. Clearly, the Instagram post is catching people’s attention.

Did he go too far?

People didn’t like that he used a picture of the youngest Trump. However, to be fair, Trump has no issue with infants being taken from parents at the southern border and left in detention centers. Those in the detention centers have ended up getting pretty sick lately.

Lopez gained new fans from the joke.

They say some humor is supposed to be offensive. Not to mention that political comedy can get really offensive since people don’t like being challenged.

Oh, come on now. Why are you crying?

Did you think the joke was funny or do you think that Lopez went a step too far.

READ: People Are Dragging George Lopez Because He Says He Is Going To Quit Golf Until A Clean DREAM Act Is Passed

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