On the morning of May 12, 2008, Postville, Iowa experienced the largest single workplace raid in US history to date. When U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) arrived and detained 389 workers, the town lost nearly 20 percent of its people. In the following months, ICE continued to break records with two large-scale sweeps, one in Laurel, Mississippi with 595 workers and a second in Greenville, South Carolina with 300 workers. We don’t often hear about the impact on families, friends and communities of the workers who were detained. Below is a video interview with a child from Postville right after the raid where he voices his concerns and hopes. Video by CentroLegalMN
Julianne Hing’s Q&A with Erik Camayd Freixas has insight that is rarely heard. Freixas was one of five interpreters that traveled with ICE to Postville. The federal court interpreter gives an insider’s account of the justice system during one the largest immigration raids in U.S. history. Q&A: Erik Camayd Freixas, Read it here
Also, take a look at Daisy Hernandez’s piece on a mother under house arrest coping in the months following a raid. Read Moms Under House Arrest here
The ACLU has the prepackaged scripts for plea and sentencing hearings as well as documents providing for guilty pleas and waivers of rights that were used to push the Postville workers through mass criminal proceedings as quickly as possible. The manual is available here.