SSIP is a longtime advocate for immigrant rights in Will & DuPage counties. We serve people by empowering them through education and civic engagement initiatives. This is our mission. And our values as a community based organization are humanity, dignity for all, and justice.

Today, SSIP stands in solidarity with all immigrant and refugee families, and with everyone gathered here. Because, our values do not allow us to sit on the sidelines as immigrant families are torn, literally & physically torn apart. As working fathers and mothers are being profiled and pulled over by ICE right here in our very own communities.

SSIP believes that immigrant families belong together. Together, AND NOT in cages. Together, AND NOT in detention centers.

Unfortunately today, our country is turning immigrant families away. Not just turning them away, their children are being ripped out of their arms, traumatizing young kids, terrifying them. Then, they are being detained, and put in cages. They are being used as pawns for what sounds like a political game with no end.

Today, our community lives in fear, of going outside, going to work, taking their children to school, because a 6-day operation called “Keeping our Communities Safe” was conducted by ICE in May in which over 150 people were profiled and detained, without warrants, without probable cause, and without evidence of a criminal record.  This cannot be human.

If an agency like ICE, that has only been around for the last 15 years, has only been able to achieve a reputation for terrifying the community and separating families, we ask then what their real purpose and accomplishment has been. We don’t believe that any money coming from our taxes should ever be spent on terrorizing children or our communities, with no accountability.

This is why today, we believe it is time to #AbolishICE.

Let’s take a moment and re-imagine border agents as a humanitarian force that rescues migrants rather than caging children.

Right now, Governor Rauner has an opportunity to be different. Right now, on his desk is the SAFE ZONES act, which he can sign into law to protect Illinois immigrant families from being ripped apart while they are using services at schools, courthouses, and hospitals. Call Governor Rauner today. Call 217-782-0244 and ask him to sign SB35 into law.

SSIP believes that immigrant families belong free! Free to move and migrate for a better chance at a dignified life. Together and free, helping our suburban communities thrive, contributing their cultural heritage, building up businesses, enhancing our schools, moving us forward in a globalized world. Immigrants make our suburban communities great. They make Illinois great and strong. They make our country great.

We deserve to not have to live in fear of violence or poverty. We deserve the chance to fight for our families.

We are proud of the people that have gathered here today. And, we are thankful for the opportunity to be a part of this crucial day.


Dolores Huerta
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