On April 5th federal immigration enforcement agents carried out the largest workplace raid in over a decade in Bean Station, TN. Ninety-seven members of our community were arrested and are now facing deportation, and 54 of them are currently detained. This was the country’s largest immigration workplace raids in over a decade, and the impact on the local community, especially children, has been devastating. In the aftermath of the raid, about 500 - 600 children (about 5% of the district's 10,000 students) were absent from school in Hamblen County, and many children are dealing with trauma as a result of the detention and possible deportation of a loved one. Read more in CNN.
We urge the Tennessee Department of Education, the Tennessee Commission on Children and Youth, and other public agencies to investigate the impact of the April 5th immigration raid on local children and families, offer capacity and resources to the local school district in responding to this crisis, and develop plans for immediate intervention in the event of future immigration enforcement operations of this scale.