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Quezada, Community Leaders, Blast ICE Raids
From the campaign to elect Eric Quezada to District 9 Supervisor
October 22, 2008
A San Francisco immigrant family, reportedly all U.S. citizens, was raided and harassed at gunpoint Wednesday by the Immigration and Customs Enforcement agency (ICE).
By day’s end, as many as 17 Bay Area residences had been raided. Several people have been detained.
At 4:30 a.m., ICE officials broke down doors, tossed around family belongings, pointed their pistol at Julio Cesar Hernandez from just a meter away, and handcuffed the adults. Hernandez’ two children, aged 4 years and 7 months old, were traumatized by the raid.
In response, District 9 Supervisorial candidate Eric Quezada is teaming up with immigrant community leaders to mobilize legal and social resources for families victimized by the raids.
“Everybody has rights, whether they’re documented or not,” said Quezada, who has helped immigrant families with housing, legal, and employment assistance for years. “This harassment of families is shameful and must be strongly condemned by local leaders.”
Quezada called for swift implementation of a Municipal ID program to protect immigrants from violence and harassment and greater funding for legal and education services to help stabilize families.
“We need to strengthen the sanctuary ordinance,” Quezada said, “and we need to see some political courage from the mayor in these moments, to stand up for what’s right.”
“We need leaders who aren’t afraid of political fallout, to stand up for immigrant communities. We need city leaders who have consistently stood by immigrant communities, which are a lifeblood of our city’s culture and economy,” Quezada added.
“I have trembling in my heart,” Hernandez told immigrant rights attorney Mark Silverman. “I told them that I am a U.S. citizen. There were about 20 law enforcement people in the house. When I talked about my civil rights, one of them laughed.”