Latino Rebels received the following media release on Friday afternoon about a Thursday raid by U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement at a Tennessee meatpacking plant:
BEAN STATION, Tenn. – Nearly one hundred people in a meatpacking plant were arrested and detained in the largest immigration workplace raid to date under the Trump administration. Workers at the meatpacking plant reported rough treatment and detention despite having work authorization, a clear violation of the law and basic, constitutional rights.
Children were left without primary caretakers, and local churches have provided sanctuary for dozens of others. Eyewitnesses also report that local law enforcement blocked roads around the plant, creating a sense of chaos and panic within the community.
The Tennessee Immigrant and Refugee Rights Coalition (TIRRC) first found out about the raids shortly before 11:00am on April 5th,and immediately deployed staff and volunteers to provide legal intake and other supports. Thus far, TIRRC has helped nearly 90 people complete legal intake forms, and the facts displayed show a clear and disturbing pattern of abuse at the hands of law enforcement.
The immigration raid comes after a series of federal attacks on immigrant communities from Washington. Earlier this week, the White House announced it would send federal troops to the border despite historic lows in border crossings.
The following is a quote from Stephanie Teatro, Co-Executive Director at TIRRC:
“Our communities have lived under intense fear since the Trump administration began, and this raid ,coupled with local law enforcement involvement, will send shockwaves across the country. The community has shown tremendous strength in the face of this brazen attack on its members: Churches have become sanctuaries for those who feel unsafe, community leaders are speaking out against the attack, and we will continue to fight for basic, Constitutional rights for all. No one, not even the president, can take those away.”