Labor Union Resolution
Statewide organizational sign-on letter
St. Adalberto Catholic Church on May 12 to commemorate the first anniversary of the tragic immigration raid in Postville, Iowa.
“The immigration raids that have been held around the country and here in our own community are an affront to our faith values. We cannot allow our country to terrorize individuals and separate families,” said Fr. Eleazar Perez, pastor of the church and a leader in local immigration reform efforts. “We must support our immigrant workers and their families and we must work for reform of the policies that hurt them!”
The prayer on May 12 included a choral reading of the play, “La Historia” which was written by Postville detainees, documenting the story of their lives in their home countries, their journey to Postville, their work experiences at Agriprocessors, the agony of their arrest and detention, and their hopes for the future.
During the prayer the names of the 389 workers who were arrested were read and honored. Participants also wrote the names of their loved ones who have been arrested and deported on a large card which was included in the prayer.
On May 12th, 2008, Immigrants Custom Enforcement (ICE) agents arrested 389 people at Agriprocessors, the local kosher meat packing plant in Postville, Iowa. At the time, this was the largest raid in the history of the United States, changing the lives of many, in the town and around the nation.
The Raid in Numbers:
• 389 were arrested despite ICE agents being prepared with over 600 arrest warrants. The discrepancy is due to second and third shift workers not being in the plant.
• Only 5 of those arrested had any sort of criminal record.
• 56 were released with ankle bracelets, for humanitarian or health reasons, 12 were minors, the rest were mostly women with children.
• By the morning of May 13th, one-third of Postville had fled and 120 of the 363 students were absent from school.
MICAH’s Immigration Committee continues to work for comprehensive immigration reform. To get involved, call Sister Barbara Pfarr, 414.841.2762
Myths & Facts
Myth: Immigrants to Wisconsin do not want to assimilate
Fact: In 2006, 42.6 percent of Wisconsin's foreign born population were naturalized citizens. Many more applicants for citizenship are facing long processing delays.
Get more of the facts >>
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