In The News

No calls or showers: Boy, reunited with mom, tells of trek from Houston to Homestead - Miami Herald

JULY 14, 2019 04:47 PM 

A 15-year-old boy from Houston, who was picked up by immigration authorities in Texas and sent to the Homestead children’s detention center even though he has lived in the U.S. since he was an infant and his parents live in the U.S., walked out of the facility on Sunday, two days after a story about his plight appeared in the Miami Herald.

The teen, who had been detained during a traffic stop while he was a passenger in his uncle’s car near Houston, was separated from his parents for more than two weeks.

Hours after the story ran on the Herald’s website Friday, the boy’s story was brought up in front of a House Oversight Committee. Illinois Congresswoman Robin Kelly entered it into the record and demanded that the Inspector General’s Office open an investigation into the practice of detaining children who have not been stopped at the border and whose parents live in the U.S. Officials have told the Herald at least 20 kids in a similar situation have ended up at the Homestead center for unaccompanied minors over the past year.

Read more Share

Immigrant families cowered in South Florida, but threatened ICE raids never came - Miami Herald

JULY 14, 2019 07:40 AM

The immigration enforcement raids that President Donald Trump said would start Sunday, with mass arrests expected in Miami and other major cities, never got under way as immigrant families with removal orders and others targeted for deportation remained on alert throughout the day, some of them hiding in secret shelters.

Immigration and Customs Enforcement agents were reportedly in Miami’s Sweetwater neighborhood on Sunday and in the migrant farming community of Immokalee on Friday — raising fears, but not much else. There were no large-scale roundups in Miami or any of the other eight cities where raids were expected, though federal authorities said enforcement actions would take place throughout the week.

Trump spent his Sunday golfing at Trump National Golf Club in Sterling, Va. Though he was active on Twitter throughout the day — even telling a group of American congresswomen to ‘go back’ to the places from which they came — the president made no mention of the planned immigration sweeps.

Read more Share

Homestead isn’t just for kids at the border, it’s for kids living in the U.S. their whole lives - Miami Herald

JULY 12, 2019 06:00 AM 

At the 3,200-bed Homestead detention center for unaccompanied immigrant youths, one 15-year-old boy is an aberration: He has lived in the United States virtually his entire life.

Far from being a recent arrival at the southern border, the teen entered the country when he was a 9-month-old infant; he has lived in Houston his whole life, along with his mother, who brought him to the U.S. in 2004.

More than two weeks ago, the teen was detained in Texas when a local county cop pulled his uncle over for speeding. When they could not produce immigration documents, the boy and his uncle — the Miami Herald is not identifying either one because of their immigration status — were promptly arrested, then separated.

Read more Share

Migrants have been held in hotels before — including in South Florida. It could happen again - Miami Herald

JULY 13, 2019 03:06 PM 

The deportation raids set to start in 10 cities across the country — including in Miami — on Sunday risk putting a new player front-and-center in the national controversy over migrant detention: hotel rooms.

The Trump administration’s immigration crackdown, originally slated to begin late last month before being delayed, could sweep up the 2,000 individuals targeted by ICE for deportation — as well as other members of those individuals’ households, who will also be asked to produce immigration documents.

But because there are no family detention centers in South Florida, ICE plans to use area hotels to hold families for a maximum of 24 hours before they are transferred to facilities out of state, and eventually deported.

Read more Share

Here Are Resources to Prepare for an ICE Raid in Miami - Miami New Times

President Donald Trump's Immigration and Customs Enforcement department is, according to reports, planning on launching immigration raids on Sunday in ten cities — Atlanta, Baltimore, Chicago, Denver, Houston, Los Angeles, New Orleans, New York City, San Francisco, and Miami. Details about the proposed raids are still scarce, but Trump appears to be targeting about 2,000 people who have been ordered deported but have remained in the country anyway. But, more worryingly, ICE says it will also arrest any other undocumented people that may be on-scene wherever they go.

Read more Share

Community Partners and Immigration Advocates to Host Citizenship and Voter Registration Drive - South Florida Caribbean News

MIAMI – In celebration of Emancipation Day, community partners to host a Citizenship & Voter Registration Drive on Saturday August 10, 2019, 10am to 2pm, at the Church of the Ascension, 11201 SW 160th Street, in SW Miami Dade County.

Experienced legal and immigration professionals will be on hand to provide free guidance on completing naturalization applications.

Eligible applicants, those with five years more with US permanent residency or three years married to a US citizen, are encouraged to plan in advance to attend.

Read more Share

There’s no place in Border Patrol for such inhumanity. Agents must be fired. | Opinion - Miami Herald

JULY 02, 2019 04:56 PM

The Border Patrol has bigger failings to fix than some of its agents’ participation in a secret, hateful Facebook group exposed by the investigative news organization ProPublica.

Consider these:

▪ Agents are still separating children from family members at the border despite an executive order signed by President Donald Trump reneging on his own directive to do so, following a blitz of public outrage.

▪ There are immigrants, including seven children in the last year, dying in custody.

▪ A Department of Homeland Security Inspector General’s report released Tuesday confirmed squalid conditions at five detention centers in Texas.

Some of the camps are unsanitary, overcrowded, without running water — and the immigrants who survive them and are lucky enough to see lawyers almost always tell stories of abusive treatment and behavior by Border Patrol agents.

Meaningful, corrective action by the Border Patrol’s parent agency, the also beleaguered U.S. Customs and Border Protection, is long overdue.

Read more Share

Recess time, education and legal services will be restored at Homestead detention center, agency says - Miami Herald

JUNE 28, 2019 05:39 PM

The United States government can resume paying for educational, legal, and recreational services at facilities like the Homestead detention center, according to the Department of Health and Human Services.

Congress passed — and President Donald Trump has indicated he will sign — a $2.88 billion emergency supplemental appropriations legislation this week.

This comes about three weeks after the Trump administration said it would dramatically cut aid to detention centers that house migrant children who arrive in the United States unaccompanied by their biological parents. Homestead is the largest of those facilities.

Read more Share

Miami's Immigration Court Has Become a Well-Oiled Deportation Machine, New Data Shows - Miami New Times

Months before President Donald Trump announced plans for massive immigration raids, members of his administration were busy cooking up plans to deport asylum-seeking families released into the United States.

Their solution? Create expedited dockets for newly arrived families in ten immigration courts in cities including Miami, Houston, San Francisco, and Chicago. These "rocket dockets" fast-track the cases of newly arrived immigrant families, leading to speedy deportation orders for those who don't turn up in court.

Read more Share

13 celebrities who donated their time and money to fight for immigrant rights - INSIDER

Read more Share

6355 NW 36th St, Suite 2201
Miami, FL 33166
T 305-573-1106
F 305-576-6273

About Us:

AI Justice is an award-winning non-profit law and advocacy firm that protects and promotes the basic human rights of immigrants. In Florida and on a national level, we champion the rights of unaccompanied immigrant children; advocate for survivors of trafficking and domestic violence; serve as a watchdog on immigration detention practices and policies; and speak for immigrant groups who have particular and compelling claims to justice.