Chicoans trained to monitor immigration enforcement NorCal Resist holds training at Chico cafe

photo by Leslie Layton
Autumn Gonzalez

by Leslie Layton

Autumn Gonzalez, an attorney who helps lead the Sacramento-based NorCal Resist group, spoke at the Blackbird Chico cafe this evening on how community members can support immigrants and monitor ICE (U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement) during raids or other actions that might occur in this area.

Gonzalez said residents of the North State can support immigrant communities by acting as observers during ICE detentions, or by conducting a simple protest during immigration enforcement actions or by accompanying asylum seekers who need support and/or rides to appointments and court. Those who attended today’s “Chico Accompaniment & Rapid Response to ICE Training” session were invited to fill out applications to become NorCal Resist observers who contact a hotline if they think they’ve spotted ICE in their community and then record or take notes if officers question or detain people. read more

Teens lead Chico immigration policy protest High schoolers worry that "history will repeat itself"

photo by Leslie Layton
Students from PATCH (Politically Active Teens of Chico High) staffed a voter registration booth.

by Leslie Layton

In matching teal-colored T-shirts, a group of Chico teens Saturday led some 100 people on a downtown march to protest immigration policy and conditions for refugees at the border.

The teens, all of whom are students at Chico High and Inspire School of Arts & Sciences, said they chose teal to reflect the color in the Statute of Liberty torch-holder for a protest designed to recall the conditions that led to the Holocaust. read more

Nelson finds her visit with immigrant detainee “poignant” Detained immigrants in Yuba City need human contact, visitation group says

photo by Chris Nelson
Visitors entrance at the Yuba County Jail

by Chris Nelson

It was serendipity that I visited the man I did at the Yuba County Jail Monday in Marysville.

I got there four minutes too late to see the man I had planned to meet; the second name I had was a man who had been transferred elsewhere and the third candidate wasn’t available for a visit until later in the day. All three of those men had Latino surnames. The man I did get to visit was from Vietnam. read more

Citizenship gives Santa Rosa dad sense of security Green-card holders seek protection through citizenship

photo by Lindajoy Fenley
Joel Verdejo Flores with children David and Gabriela.

by Lindajoy Fenley

Joel Verdejo Flores worked without authorization for nearly five years in California before obtaining a green card that made him a permanent resident in 1995.

He was 20 years old, Bill Clinton was president and moving beyond residency to citizenship didn’t seem like a pressing matter. But that changed in 2016 with the election of President Donald Trump.

As Trump’s supporters continued shouting, “Build that wall,” the Santa Rosa father of two U.S.-born children heard that immigration enforcement was becoming more rigorous. He stopped wavering. read more

Proposed citizenship question turns Census into civil rights issue Inaccurate tally could affect minority communities, election results

by Lindajoy Fenley

Ethnic minority organizations are vowing to do everything possible to encourage an accurate census count in the face of what they called a Trump Administration plan to solidify conservative Republican power with a distorted tally.

“The 2020 Census is one of the most urgent civil rights issues facing America,” said moderator Beth Lynk of the Leadership Conference Education Fund in opening an Ethnic Media Services press conference by telephone that featured speakers for five organizations. read more

Chico’s “undocumented” attorney earns U.S. citizenship Sergio Garcia says family-based migration is crucial

photo by Karen Laslo
Salvador Covarrubias (left) brought his young son Sergio Garcia to Chico, knowing that the boy would qualify for residency.

by Leslie Layton

It took Sergio C. Garcia longer to become a U.S. citizen than it took for his native country, Mexico, to win independence from Spain.

It took longer than it took for him to win the right to practice law, becoming the nation’s first, so-called undocumented attorney.

Garcia will be sworn in as a U.S. citizen in a ceremony today in Sacramento – the end of a journey that began in 1994 when he was brought to the country as a teen who knew even then that if he was going to live in the United States, he wanted to belong as a participating citizen. read more