Immigration activists continue to push the Obama administration to halt deportations as the clock continues ticking for Congress to act on a comprehensive immigration reform bill. The #Not1MoreDeportation campaign is an effort organized by the National Day Laborer Organizing Network to stop deportations with direct action.
On Friday a group of activists in Tucson, Arizona tied themselves to the wheels of two buses headed to an Operation Streamline proceeding. Other activists chained themselves to the entrance of the court.
Operation Streamline is a quick federal court proceeding that criminalizes border crossing. Someone who is accused of crossing the border illegally is charged, tried, and sentenced to a detention center to do some jail time in a day. A proceeding can have up to 70 border crossers who appear before a single judge. The goal of the program is to discourage other would be border crossers from entering because of the criminal conviction and jail sentence. Critics have said that the program is unjust and does not deter additional border crossings, while the government says that the program is working.
Friday’s protest halted the Operation Streamline process in Tucson for a day. The protest shows a shift toward using bodies to stop the deportation machine instead of traditional lobbying efforts. Almost two million immigrants have been deported since President Obama took office in 2009, and the President has indicated that he would not stop the deportations of the parents of deferred action recipients.
Photo Credit: National Day Laborer Organizing Network