Chico residents to ask City Council for sanctuary designation On Tuesday, from the floor, a resolution proposal

women's march on chico

photo by Karen Laslo

 
Participant in January’s Women’s March on Chico

by Leslie Layton

A group of Chico residents plan to address the City Council Tuesday to request a “sanctuary” designation for the city – a statement that is important and controversial in an era of harsh immigration enforcement.

Elizabeth Alaniz, assistant director of Chico State’s Financial Aid and Scholarship office, said students from several campus groups plan to address the City Council on the issue at the panel’s Feb. 21 meeting. And Chico author and Zen Buddhist Lin Jensen said he has composed a draft resolution for a sanctuary designation after conducting extensive research on the matter.

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Sweeping dragnet a cornerstone of new immigration policy Mobilizations in defense of immigrants help, attorney says

Chico women's march participant photo by Leslie Layton
Chico women’s march participant

photo by Leslie Layton

by Leslie Layton

President Donald Trump is quickly re-shaping immigration policy with an emphasis on harsh enforcement, in part by issuing executive orders that cast a much wider deportation net.

In a telephone briefing Wednesday with members of the ethnic press nationwide, immigration attorneys discussed two orders signed Jan. 25 – two days prior to the Jan. 27 order that came to be known as the Muslim ban. The earlier pair of executive orders received scant media coverage until recently, when stories began appearing about the deportations of long-term U.S. residents who have no criminal record.

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Fear grips communities as immigrants prepare for new administration Information is empowering, rights advocates say

OneJustice legal fellow Maureen Slack and Orland Unified Student Support Services Secretary Neli Peña discuss the upcoming immigration fair.
OneJustice legal fellow Maureen Slack and Orland Unified’s Neli Peña at a planning meeting for the March immigration fair.

by Leslie Layton

Scared.

That’s how attorneys and immigrant rights advocates were describing their clients in the weeks preceding the inauguration of a president whose campaign was laced with hostile anti-immigrant rhetoric.

As a candidate, Donald Trump talked about massive deportations and vowed to end Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA), a program that has brought relief to hundreds of thousands of young adults who were raised in this country without legal status.

The best antidote for fear, say rights advocates, is preparation. In California cities, immigrants can usually find a qualified organization that offers free or low-cost services – including legal consultations and know-your-rights forums. But in rural California, those kinds of resources are often rare or nonexistent.

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‘Door of Hope’ event opens wall that splits families Divided by an international border, families win a few minutes of respite from separation

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slideshow by Bianca Quilantan
by Bianca Quilantan

Laura Avila and her daughter Laura Vera Martinez waited nervously on the United States side of the border with her mother standing inches away from them in Mexico. Rusted pillars and steel mesh divided them. They could hear one another, but not touch.

Avila had driven 140 miles from Los Angeles to San Ysidro, a San Diego district and the last U.S. exit before entering Mexico. Her mother, Maria Socorro Martinez Lopez, had flown 1,821 miles from Puebla, Mexico, to Playas de Tijuana for a chance to see her daughter and granddaughter.

Only six families and two alternate families were selected by Border Angels, a humanitarian group, and the U.S. Border Patrol to have the opportunity to briefly reunite with their loved ones that could not legally visit because of their Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA) program/work permit. It allows them to stay in the U.S. but also prevents them from being able to leave. Most of their families across the border also cannot visit legally because they have been deported.

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Trump presidency alarms immigrant community Advocates say take steps to prepare

photo by Karen Laslo

photo by Karen Laslo

by Leslie Layton

Immigrant rights advocates are bracing for an uphill fight in the wake of Donald Trump’s presidential victory and encouraging people who could be harmed by an immigration crackdown to take steps now to protect themselves.

“We definitely have a fight ahead of us,” said Kamal Essaheb, director of policy and advocacy at the National Immigration Law Center (NILC), “a fight against the criminalization of immigrants and people of color, a fight for true economic justice for a country where everybody, regardless of the color of their skin or immigration status, can seek opportunities to make their lives better. And immigrants, documented or not, will be a critical part of that fight.”

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