Philadelphia Mayor Michael Nutter signed the executive order ending ICE Holds, which are non-mandatory deportation requests from ICE to the local police. This is a huge victory for immigrants and their allies who have fought for years. Philadelphia now has one of the most progressive policies in the country because it ends ICE holds for immigrants with criminal convictions. Our faith values call us to support redemption and second chances; immigrants shouldn’t suffer the double punishment of serving their sentences and then being deported immediately from jail.
When Mayor Nutter signed the order ending all ICE holds, so many emotions went through my mind. I know that this policy will not bring my deported son back but I am proud to be here together with many others to witness the fruits of our work to bring justice for other families so they don’t have to feel the pain I went through.
-Teresa Flores, one of our leaders who has worked tirelessly to end this toxic relationship between federal deportation agents and local law enforcement.
We thank our member congregations and supporters who have organized with us for years. Thank you so much for your hard work by praying, fasting, preaching, marching, writing letters, doing education events, calling city officials, visiting city officials and most importantly thank you because you believed in the cause, put your faith in action and WON. We also thank the immigrant community leaders who, despite the pain and fear, challenged themselves to come forward as undocumented and have screamed their truth with courage. Thank you to our coalition partners in the grassroots, city-wide coalition that organized together to end ICE holds through the Philadelphia Family Unity Network (PFUN).