15 Oct MCJ Welcomes Policy Shift on Workplace Raids, Urges Action on Behalf of Victims of Nation’s Largest One-Day Raid
On Tuesday, October 12, 2021, the Biden Administration announced an important shift in immigration enforcement policy—that instead of focusing on large workplace enforcement raids against immigrant workers, it would instead shift its focus to investigating and punishing exploitative employers. We applaud the Biden Administration’s decision to cease workplace enforcement raids moving forward, but also urge them to ensure that the nearly 700 Mississippians who suffered the largest statewide workplace enforcement raid in US history receive justice. We are calling for the US government to permit the return of the hundreds of Mississippians already removed from the country as a result of the raids, and to afford immigration protections like deferred action (with a work permit) and U, S, and T visas for raids victims who qualify. We also call on the government to fully investigate (and prosecute, where applicable) labor abuses at the impacted plants as well as abuses by government officials conducting the raids. As noted in our second anniversary report, not a single top executive or corporation whose premises were raided has been indicted. Only a few mid-level managers were charged.
Unless the Biden Administration takes further action, Tuesday’s policy decision will not afford relief to Mississippians whose lives the raids have already crippled or destroyed. We estimate that over 200 Mississippians have already been deported following the 2019 ICE raids. Hundreds more who remain have lost jobs, family members and friends, and will live in legal limbo for years to come as they await their day in court. We urge the Biden Administration to follow through with the recommendations outlined above.
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