[Marxism] Repression intensifies at the Mexican border (2)

Mike Friedman mikedf at amnh.org
Sat Aug 11 18:45:46 MDT 2007

Border crackdown working, numbers show
By TRACI CARL, Associated Press Writer
1 hour, 57 minutes ago

TECATE, Mexico - Mexican shelters, usually the last stop for northbound
migrants, are filling with southbound deportees. Fewer migrants are
crossing in the wind-swept deserts along an increasingly fortified border.
Far to the north, fields are empty at harvest time as workplace raids
become more common.

Mexicans are increasingly giving up on the American dream and staying
home, and the federal crackdown on undocumented workers announced Friday
should discourage even potential migrants from taking the risks as the
United States purges itself of its illegal population.

U.S. border agents detained 55,545 illegal migrants jumping over border
walls, walking through the desert and swimming across the Rio Grande River
between October and June. That's down 38 percent for the entire border
compared to the same period a year before.


2) National Immigrant Solidarity Network:
White House announcement about DHS enforcement strategies

Rights Working Group
Due Process and Detention Policy Update
August 10, 2007

Please see the attached DHS Fact Sheet for more information about
additional provisions:

Today, the Bush Administration released a fact sheet describing a new
interior enforcement and border security strategy. The 26 point plan
includes provisions on border security, interior enforcement, worksite
enforcement, citizenship, and changes to our existing temporary worker
programs, among other provisions.  While some of the activities announced
are reaffirmations of current policy, the plan also included several new
provisions that are of concern.  With no plan to enact comprehensive
immigration reform in sight, our communities are at risk of increased
enforcement without appropriate due process protections and this plan only
puts immigrants at greater risk of detention and deportation. We hope that
you will contact the administration and your members of Congress to
express concern about increased immigration enforcement that does not
include the restoration of fairness to our broken system. Below, there is
a short description of a few of the most troubling provisions that raise
due process, privacy and fairness concerns:

- Denying a fair day in court:  Immigrants who have a valid claim to stay
in the U.S. should be permitted to see a judge and shouldn’t be forced to
leave the U.S. simply because they previously agreed to voluntarily depart
on their own.  Today, the administration announced its intention to create
a new regulation that would limit an immigrant’s access to a hearing if
the person previously accepted a form of immigration relief called
‘voluntary departure.’ Immigrants who have new family relationships such
as a recent marriage to a U.S. citizen should be able to ask a judge for
relief in their case. By announcing this new regulation, DHS seems intent
on doing an end run around several federal court decisions that permit
immigrants to have a hearing even though they previously accepted
‘voluntary departure.’

- The government’s final rule on Social Security “No-Match” letters: The
new rule governs situations where an employer receives a letter indicating
that an employee’s social security number does not match government
records. Basing worksite enforcement on a federal database that is not
reliable poses a great danger to workers. If an employer cannot resolve
the discrepancy between the worker’s documents and the government’s
records, this rule gives employers little choice but to fire the worker.
Without comprehensive immigration reform, this no-match rule will drive
the undocumented population further into the shadows. It also raises
concerns about discrimination and abuse. The rule could encourage
unscrupulous employers to pay their workers under the table to avoid risk
of prosecution based on a no-match finding. It may also promote
discrimination against foreign-born workers and the termination of lawful
employment in cases where workers have difficulty proving their lawful

- Expanded employment eligibility verification basic pilot program:  The
administration announced an expansion of the basic pilot program to all
federal contracts and related provisions. There have been numerous
examples of individuals who are held up from time on a new job because of
errors in the basic pilot program’s database.  The program is currently
bogged down by technical problems and inaccurate information and further
expansion will only result in more workers with lawful status being denied
work. The administration will also seek to expand the data sources used by
the basic pilot program include passport and visa information. This not
only raises privacy issues but also concerns about the likelihood of more
inaccurate information in the databases.

- Expanded information-sharing between DHS and the Social Security
Administration:  The sharing of information between inaccurate DHS
databases and the Social Security Administration raises concerns both
about privacy and the potential for proliferation of inaccurate

- Border enforcement and detention bed space: The plan includes expanded
detention capacity from current levels of approximately 27,500 detention
beds to 31,500 detention beds; 18,300 Border Patrol agents; 370 miles of
fencing; 300 miles of vehicle barriers; and 105 camera and radar towers.  
The strategy also includes plans to quintuple ‘fugitive operation teams’
which will only lead to more raids in our communities.

- Continued efforts at state and local law enforcement of immigration law:
The administration announced plans to continue its “287(g)” program that
allows states and localities to enter into agreements with the federal
government to enforce immigration law. It also announced related
taskforces that will expand local enforcement of immigration law, putting
more communities in danger. Many communities and local police departments
oppose this policy because it interferes with community policing projects
that encourage immigrant community members to report crimes.

- Expanded list of ‘gangs’ that the State Department will use to deny
visas to foreign nationals: The announcement is not clear about what
criteria or process will be used to determine what constitutes a ‘gang.’

- Expanded efforts to repatriation to ‘recalcitrant’ countries:  The
administration is seeking to expand a repatriation system that has been
widely criticized by foreign governments and advocates within the U.S. for
its failure to ensure detainee safety and the safety of local communites. 
The administration should improve repatriation assistance so that
deportees are transitioned safely into their new communities.

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