The latest episode of our podcast, “A is for America”, features an interview with Amy Rose, Legal Director of the ACLU of Nevada, who spoke to us about an anti-immigrant ballot initiative that advocates managed to keep off the ballot this fall in Nevada.
It’s been another crazy week in immigration. The Trump Administration continues to separate children from their families, which — to be clear — is a policy enacted by the Trump Administration for unnecessary and cruel reasons. There is no law that mandates that the U.S. continue this practice.
In detention news, Roxsana Hernandez, died in the custody of immigration officials after coming to the U.S. to seek asylum. She was raped in Honduras for being transgender, but was not given adequate medical treatment in immigration detention, and ultimately died of apparent cardiac arrest. Meanwhile, Udoka Nweke, a gay man from Nigeria, continues to be held in detention, where he has been since 2016 after also seeking asylum.
In politics, Donald Trump had Tennessee crowds chanting “animals” this week to describe immigrants, and Trump himself said that his anti-immigrant strategy is not about policy, but politics. The GOP doesn’t have anything to show for itself since the last election, and instead will be spending this year focusing on hate and cruelly using immigrants to whip up their base.
One conduit for this extremist strategy will be anti-immigrant laws at the state and local level. In Nevada, anti-immigrant opponents have been trying to get a discriminatory initiative onto the state ballot this November, which would change the state constitution to force local officials to cooperate with ICE on immigration enforcement. The initiative was barred from being put on this year’s ballot due to language that the state supreme court ruled was “deceptive and misleading”, though supporters of the initiative may try again in 2020. (Our interview with Amy Rose starts at 10:30.)
“A is for America” is a podcast which tells stories from the front lines of a changing America. Each week, we’ll be talking to advocates and experts working in immigration reform, immigrants’ rights, immigration politics, and the forefront of what it means to be a new American. Tune in next week for more.