N.H. advocacy groups call for halt to deportation
Five New Hampshire faith-based and social groups are planning a “week of action” to protest the detention and deportation of immigrants who have not committed serious crimes.
The groups are planning prayer vigils and educational events in Nashua, Dover, Durham, Manchester and Concord beginning tomorrow.
The New Hampshire groups also will be
joining others at a vigil outside the Immigration and Customs Enforcement building in Burlington, Mass., on Thursday.
The slogan of the week of action is “Not One More.” Representatives of the groups said the immigrants whose detention and deportation they are protesting are those who would be eligible for the “path to citizenship” if immigration legislation passes.
“The administration and ICE have stated repeatedly that their priority is detention and deportation of serious criminals, but according to the 2012 statistics, 45 percent of those who were deported had no criminal convictions at all,” said Eva Castillo, director of the New Hampshire Alliance for Immigrants and Refugees.
According to ICE’s statistics, 23 percent of the immigrants deported between July 2010 and September 2012 had children who are U.S. citizens, organizers said.
The week ends with a vigil at the federal courthouse in Concord.
Other groups involved in the week’s actions are the American Friends Service Committee, the New
Hampshire Citizens Alliance, the Granite State Organizing Project and the United Church of Christ New Hampshire Immigration Working Group.