Vermont stops courthouse immigration arrests!
Posted Tue, 05/31/2022 - 6:50pm
Governor Phil Scott has signed into law S.140, a bill introduced by Migrant Justice to prohibit immigration arrests at Vermont courts. Vermont now becomes one of a handful of states to protect immigrant rights at courthouses.
In recent years, ICE has staked out courthouses around the state to detain and deport immigrants appearing for hearings. Agents have arrested people in courtrooms, on courthouse steps, and in court parking lots. One of those affected was Beto Sanchez, who recently spoke at a recent press conference:
“When I went to my hearing, everybody in the courtroom but me knew that ICE was there to arrest me. I spent three and a half months in detention before I was finally released. When people ask me if they should go to court, I don’t know what to tell them. We want to do the right thing but it’s not fair that just by going to court we can be arrested and deported.”
Farmworker leader Olga Cruz, who provided key testimony in support of the bill, celebrated the law’s passage: “This is a big step forward, but it’s only a step in a larger fight to protect our rights and end ICE’s attacks against our community.”
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