Telemundo Town Hall Examines Impact of Deportations on Undocumented Immigrants

By Sameer Rao Feb 13, 2017

Immigration and Customs Enforcement officers arrested, by the agency’s own account, more than 680 undocumented immigrants last week. Spanish-language network Telemundo addressed those raids, President Donald Trump‘s hardline executive orders and more in a town hall special that aired yesterday (February 12).

"Immigration, Trump and the Hispanic Community" featured anchor José Díaz-Balart moderating a discussion between audience members and four panelists: immigration lawyer Alma Rosa Nieto; conservative political commentator Ana Navarro; National Council of La Raza’s deputy vice president, Clarissa Martínez-de-Castro; and executive director of the Coalition for Humane Immigrant Rights of Los Angeles, Angélica Salas.

Much of the conversation focused on the recent raids. Audience member Marlene Mosqueda started the forum with a question about her recently-arrested undocumented father. "What possibilities are there that my father can be released on bail?" she asked.

"Every person who is detained can ask to be released on bail," responded Nieto, as translated by the Los Angeles Daily News. "Sometimes, you have to appeal it to an immigration judge for a ruling in favor of bail," she added. "If a person has been previously detained, then it’s more difficult."

Nieto, Mártinez, Navarro and Salas went on to converse with audience members about other specific aspects of immigration law, as well as how to handle house visits from immigration officers working under Trump’s executive orders. According to the Daily News, Nieto later advised people encountering law enforcement in their homes to request the officers provide a warrant through the window or under the door; Salas added that a resident’s name should be on the warrant before the officers are permitted entry. They emphasized that all U.S. residents have a constitutional right to remain silent, regardless of citizenship.

Watch the full Spanish-language special above.