For Tennessee's immigrant families, it's not just ICE they have to fear.
The terror and trauma of Trump's campaign of mass deportations is strengthened here in Tennessee by local elected officials, emboldened and eager to join the deportation force.
The Tennessee Highway Patrol has repeatedly assisted ICE in carrying out raids this year. The Knox County Sheriff's Office has implemented a 287(g) agreement to empower their deputies to act as ICE agents and deport members of the Knoxville community. The Knox County Sheriff's Office also signed an agreement to allow ICE to use the local jail as an immigrant detention center, just like the Nashville Sheriff's office.
Tomorrow, a sweeping new law will go into effect that prohibits state and local government agencies from refusing to participate in mass deportations. Despite outcry from local law enforcement, educators, domestic violence victims' advocates, and others, Governor Haslam allowed HB2315 to become law in May of 2018.
Since then, immigrant communities across Tennessee have been panicking about HB2315, feeling less secure in their futures here. Can we enroll our kids in schools? If It get pulled over, can the police deport me? HB2315 creates a climate of fear that makes many of Tennessee's immigrant families feel like no one and nowhere is safe.
HB2315 is one of the most extreme, anti-immigrant laws in the country and it is an affront to our values. In preparation for the new law going into effect, we have been building a massive infrastructure to challenge the law, stop deportations, and create a new sense of belonging and safety in our local communities.
We have trained dozens of leaders and organizational partners on the new law and their rights under HB2315. We have developed a robust monitoring and intake system to learn how state and local government agencies are changing their policies and treating immigrants in our communities. We will work with immigrant leaders, local government partners, and our supporters from all over Tennessee to mount a powerful defense to challenge this unjust law.
Will you join us?
To monitor HB2315 and defend against its injustice in all 95 counties, we need to massively scale up our community education, legal services, and advocacy work. And we need your help.
Will you make a year-end tax deductible gift to TIRRC before midnight? By making a gift, you're helping to build a movement to challenge HB2315 and fight back against mass deportations in our state.