In response to the publicity surrounding raids by federal Immigration and Customs Enforcement (I.C.E.) agents nationally, Assemblyman Michael Blake has released a series of tips advising immigrants on ways to protect themselves. Blake’s 87th Assembly’s includes immigrant-rich Melrose and other sections of the South Bronx.
In a July 14 press release, Blake classified the raids as “continuous attacks on our Immigrant community by the Trump Administration.”He advises his constituents as follows:
HOW TO PROTECT OUR NEIGHBORS:
• Know the contact information for local houses of worship.
◦ Houses of worship are considered ‘sanctuary spaces’ for all individuals, regardless of citizenship status.
• Contact your local, trustworthy businesses for assistance in case of any I.C.E raid.
◦ Also, be sure businesses are willing and able to provide safety for undocumented individuals.
• Designate a back-up caregiver.
◦ Assign a trusted friend or relative to assume guardianship over your children should ICE arrest, detain or deport you.
• Film and record.
◦ In order to obtain first-hand evidence of inhumane treatment, the ‘record-button’ is your best friend.
KNOW YOUR RIGHTS
• You ALWAYS have the right to remain silent
◦ “Anything you say can and will be used against you.”
◦ After an arrest, individuals always have the right to remain silent. Individuals may declare that they will not answer questions until they have spoken to their attorney.
• You ALWAYS have the right to ask for a judicial warrant of search and seizure.
◦ Without a warrant granted by judicial courts, no I.C.E. agent may enter your home.
◦ You may always state that you do not consent to public searches. Without a warrant or consent, I.C.E. agents may not lawfully engage in a search.
• DO NOT become physical or resist violently.
◦ Engaging in violence provides I.C.E. Agents with opportunities to declare instances of a “threat” and the obstruction of justice.
◦ Instances of such have a greater likelihood of resulting in immediate arrest, detention, deportation, or even violent action taken by I.C.E. Agents.
• ActionNYC- free, confidential immigration assistance.
◦ Call 1-800-354-0365 between 9 AM and 6 PM, Monday- Friday.
◦ Or, dial 311 and say “ActionNYC”
• The Office of New Americans Multilingual Hotline
◦ Call 1-800-566-7636
• The Office of New York State Assembly Member, Michael A. Blake
◦ Call +1 (718) 538-3829
◦ Or, visit 780 Concourse Village West, Ground Fl. Professional, Bronx, NY 10451