Undocumented Student Action Week advises students on constitutional rights


By Luis Castilla

The Dream Resource Center held a web conference and film screening for Undocumented Student Week of Action in the Writing Center yesterday. The event was hosted by Brian Barrick, Dream Resource Center student special services specialist and featured a web conference by Immigrants Rising.

The theme of the event was “In the Know.”
Immigrants Rising is an organization dedicated to helping undocumented citizens with their education, careers and legal situation.

The web conference focused on how undocumented youth could use Immigrants Rising’s website, www.immigrantsrising.org, to get information about immigration programs and their status.

One program they provide is Immigration Law Intake Service. ILIS is a form of online legal screenings that give undocumented residents a memo with potential remedies and other resources.

These resources aim to help with their immigration status and lead them to citizenship.
The registration takes between 10 and 30 minutes.

The memo takes two to four weeks for the Immigrants Rising legal team to complete.
Applicants are encouraged to take this memo to a lawyer for further legal help. ILIS is free, anonymous and confidential.

The representatives for Immigrants Rising also explained the Family Educational Rights and Privacy Act.
Under FERPA, students are ensured confidentiality from Immigration and Customs Enforcement.
Immigrants Rising also advised students not to give any information or paperwork to ICE, should they be detained.

Instead, a card with detailed information about constitutional rights should be given to the ICE agent.
Barrick handed these cards out during the presentation to those who attended in person.
They can also be found on www.redcardorders.com.

After the web conference, a film screening of “America, I Too” was presented.
The short film was made by the Coalition for Humane Immigrant Rights of Los Angeles.
CHIRLA is a Los Angeles-based organization that helps immigrants with legal issues.

The film focused around Manny, an undocumented young man who is arrested for tagging.
In reality, he was signing his name on a mural he was hired to paint. He is then detained by ICE after it is revealed that he is an undocumented immigrant.

Also detained by ICE is Ahmed, a pizza man from Somalia and Myeong, the Japanese grandmother and sole caretaker of a little girl with autism.

Throughout the short film, their situations are somewhat resolved.

Manny’s family lawyer is able to keep him from being deported and he gets to go home.

Manny helps Ahmed while both are in custody, telling him, “Don’t just take the deportation when you don’t understand the situation.”

Ahmed then gets a lawyer to look into his case.

She explains that because Ahmed was the victim of a crime, he may be eligible for citizenship.

Myeong is allowed to stay in the United States for humanitarian reasons, but must wear an ankle bracelet.
The film gave viewers insight into different situations where immigrants are detained by ICE.

This way, they too will be prepared for such a situation. The film ends with a message reading, “You have constitutional rights. Be ready to fight for them.”

Undocumented Student Action Week will continue with two events each day at the Writing Center in E3-220 on Wednesday and Thursday at 11 a.m. and at 2 p.m.

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