San Jose Community Organizations Teach Volunteers How to Handle Workplace ICE Raids

A variety of Bay Area labor and community organizations held a training session Friday in San Jose for volunteers to learn how to help immigrants and their families deal with the effects of a workplace immigration raid.

The event was officially hosted by Rapid Response Network, which consists of a group of community organizations in the South Bay. It was hosted at the Laborers Union 270 on 509 Emory St. in San Jose.

Volunteers trained around a simulated raid from Immigrations Customs and Enforcement at a workplace, at a home without a warrant and how to handle family members who may be traumatized after the raid occurs. It also focused on how to protect families at risk of deportation. A similar training event also took place in Orange County.

State Assemblymember Ash Kalra and Santa Clara County Supervisor Dave Cortese attended the event. Both have vocally denounced the increased raids from ICE under command from the Trump administration.

"The Trump Administration has its game plan and we have ours," Cortese said in a statement. "Along with the faith-based, labor, and immigrant communities, we have built a robust network of compassionate volunteers willing to drop whatever they are doing at a moment's notice and ensure the safety of all our residents in the event of an ICE raid. We will continue to resist and persist the politics of hate and fear."

Cortese also said the county has invested $100,000 through contracts in June to support the Rapid Response Network. In addition, the county has invested $3.5 million in contracts to legal service organizations to provide direct legal representation to individual immigrants who face detention or deportation.

Advocates were also expected to call on the California Legislature to pass AB 450, which will make it tougher for employers to allow federal agents to raid their workplaces without a warrant or subpoena.

According to a 2011 study by the Center for American Progress, mass deportations decrease employment 17.4 percent and cost the California economy $301.6 billion.

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