The six undocumented DACA-eligible youth, and one undocumented mom who participated in the Broadview Detention Center blockade appeared before a hearing officer on Monday. Their action occurred one month ago as part of a national campaign against deportations. The hearing that took place concluded in a fine for each of the seven individuals.
While it was a challenging decision for the participants to agree on paying a fine rather taking the case to trial, the agreement was made with the best interest of the local organizing community in mind. At this time, undocumented people are facing legislation that places borders and enforcement as its main priority, meanwhile, deportations have not stopped. These conditions are part of a greater system that continues to tax and exploit undocumented immigrants physically, emotionally, and financially.
At court the participants were fined $125 each for attempting to stop a bus leaving Broadview to take community members being deported that day. The fine that has been placed on these seven participants fighting for justice for their community is an example of how immigrants continue to pay the ultimate price in an unjust system. We have witnessed how fathers are detained for months at a time making families pay ridiculous fees to private corporations to have 15 minutes conversations with their loved ones and mothers having to make ends meet while sending money for their loved ones to afford food. “It is frustrating to have to cover police ‘expenses’ and being told that we have placed a burden on the village while centers like Broadview exist and corporations profit from the suffering of our communities. At the very least it is ICE and its corporate partners that should be repaying the Village of Broadview because they are the ones who have placed us against the wall and left us with no option but to defend ourselves” said Xanat.
“The Broadview community should recognize that there are consequences for allowing such a harmful and dehumanizing institution as this for-profit detention center to exist in their community” said the seven participants of the action. “You can’t expect me to just sit there and watch my community get rounded up and put against a wall of fear, I was taught that I should always fight for my believes and rights, and I will not just let such an institution that can possibly deport my mother one day; be there without resistance” said Miguel Martinez.
It is our responsibility to resist the continued exploitation of our communities by corporations that have taken advantage of a broken immigration system to make immense profits. We will continue to find ways to push centers like the Broadview Detention Center that actively participate in the destruction of families.