Description/Abstract of your Event: 

Immigration enforcement in the US has been ramped up to unprecedented levels under the ideologically nativist Trump administration. The harms experienced by immigrant communities under the policies of the Trump administration and those of his predecessors remain an under-researched aspect of the critical criminology of migration. The speakers included on this thematic panel are working collectively to build an academic literature around these harms and the systems & structures that motivate their continued - and expanding - imposition.

Description/Abstract of your Event: 

Following the attacks of 9/11, the U.S. government embarked on a domestic “war on terror” which has employed a policy of preemptive prosecution that targets individuals and organizations based on their beliefs and ideology. In these cases, the actual crime is manufactured by federal law enforcement officials who almost always create and foil their own terrorist plots. This panel will discuss the questionable tactics and strategies by the government, such as discriminatory surveillance of American Muslim communities, infiltration of mosques by undercover agents and paid informants, and flawed counter-extremism programs, which undermine our fundamental freedoms. Murtaza Hussain, a journalist at The Intercept, will discuss government overreach in these national security cases. Attorney Kathy Manley, the legal director of the Coalition for Civil Freedoms, will further present on these abuses documented in a report she co-authored titled Inventing Terrorists. Ashley Young will discuss the unjust prosecution of her brother, Nicholas Young, a victim of FBI entrapment and the first law enforcement officer to be charged with terrorism.

Description/Abstract of your Event: 

A coalition of immigrant rights groups, unions, socialist organizations and other community groups called the Resist the Deportation Machine (RDM) is trying to shut down the Essex County ICE detention center in Newark, one of the largest and most notorious of such facilities.

The Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) operation rests on more than 200 detention centers with 40,000 beds, where the agency holds immigrant detainees in preparation for deporting them.

Without this vast network of facilities, ICE's deportation machine would stall. RDM believes that a nationwide movement of direct actions centered around closing ICE detention centers could block the infrastructure that the agency needs to carry out its abuses.

Join us as we work to build a world without borders by sharing strategies for shutting down abusive ICE Detention Centers

Description/Abstract of your Event: 

The New Sanctuary Coalition (NSC) believes that immigration issues stem from unjust global economic relationships and racism. This panel will present strategies for bringing together citizens with immigrants facing detention and deportation to change U.S. immigration practices and to provide sanctuary through innovative techniques/programs that get around I.C.E.'s increasingly harsh and inhumane tactics. NSC believes everyone deserves hope and dignity while fighting for their rights. This panel will include discussion of physical sanctuary in N.Y.C., asylum, work, defense, and bond.(Merriam-Webster defines ethnic cleansing as,”the expulsion, imprisonment, or killing of an ethnic minority by a dominant majority in order to achieve ethnic homogeneity.”)

Description/Abstract of your Event: 

There has been a dramatic rise in the number of immigrants detained by the US Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE), with over 400,000 people detained annually, and an average daily population of over 39,000 detained. People held in immigration detention facilities are often held in county jails in New York and New Jersey, in addition to the private ICE-run jails. They lack a legal guarantee of access to medical care.
ICE has released several sets of standards for meeting the health needs of people detained, but these guidelines are neither standardized nor binding. Human rights organizations and investigative journalists have reported substandard medical care at several detention facilities, resulting in poor health outcomes and even in-custody deaths.1 To file medical complaints, people held in detention often rely on lawyers who are not equipped to decipher medical records and are often unable to contact ICE or jail physicians for further inquiry. The role of non-ICE affiliated physician in these cases is key. By partnering with immigration lawyers to review medical records and advocate on behalf of people held in detention, community physicians can make a significant impact on the health and lives of those detained. The net effect of this government's measures is the criminalization of immigration, resulting in deleterious effects on the health of immigrants, their families and our communities alike. Parents are arrested in front of their children; at times family members are not able to locate their loved ones until after they are deported. Children who have an undocumented parent have significantly higher rates of PTSD. There is evidence that families are foregoing applying for benefits such as WIC, SNAP, or CHIP for fear that their information will be reported to federal authorities. Given the collective trauma communities are experiencing as a result of mass deportation, it is necessary to connect physicians to the community spaces where the grass-roots movements are organizing, to gain insights into how to mitigate the negative health effects of our current policies, and further work to dismantle the immigration detention system.

This condensed version of these workshops was inspired by liberation medicine month which emphasizes the conscientious use of health to promote social justice and human dignity. It parallels prior work on incarceration health and mass incarceration, adapting to the current political climate where immigrant communities are being targeted as scapegoats, making immigration status a critical social determinant of health. Medical residents will learn how mass incarceration, detention and deportation as a public health issue and will be trained in social activism.

Educational objectives
Examine barriers to medical care faced by persons held in immigration detention and evaluate their health consequences.
2. Interpret and synthesize relevant medical information in order to write effective advocacy letters on behalf of people detained.

Build immigration-focused medico-legal partnerships.
4. Create partnerships with community-based organizations with the aims of understanding how mass deportation is impacting the health of the community, listening to proposed solutions, and identifying ways in which health care professionals can contribute to existing efforts.

Participate in organizing efforts to end mass detention and deportation.

Agenda of Workshop:

I. Skills building- The Detention Evaluation

a. Overview of history of the immigration detention system, and current immigration policies as they pertain to immigration detention from a social justice/human rights framework.

i. Review of medical records and/or declarations, Letter writing

II. Community partnerships

a. Building community partnerships and why this is important in the work to dismantle the mass detention and deportation machine.

b. Advocacy (this should be guided by the dialogues with community members and organizations, may include participation in rallies or town hall meetings, writing op-eds, or organizing around hospital and/or clinic policy).

III. Building immigration-focused medico-legal partnerships that can address the legal needs of patients for which immigration status is a social determinant of health.

Description/Abstract of your Event: 

This panel will include the following four sections. First, Columbia University's teacher training co-director, Suzanne Pratt, will describe the TR@TC2 program, its goals and purposes. Second, Rebecca Stanton, a classroom teacher of record at Manhattan's Community Health Academy of the Heights will outline the intersections across theory and practice, and demonstrate instructional methods designed to engage immigrant students and encourage their voices. Next, selected high-school students and their tutors will present projects related to social justice topics of their choice. Finally, the panel will close with a question and answer segment. This panel will be of particular interest to current and entering teachers, school administrators, students, their families, as well as anyone interested in supporting immigrant students.

Description/Abstract of your Event: 

We are PhD students working in the realm of immigration with diverse positionalities, disciplines, methodologies, levels of focus, and research contexts, as well as traditionally understood identities (race and ethnicity, languages spoken, gender expression, country of origin). Our Moderated Dialogue embodies an anti-hierarchical, Bakhtinian approach to scholarship as an ongoing, polyphonic, future-making collaboration, signifying a disruption to traditional academic authority. As emerging immigration scholars with a variety of experiences, commitments, and visions in our work, we propose a transdisciplinary challenge to paternalistic, U.S.-centric ways of doing immigration scholarship. We will present our diverse research, which takes place across three continents, and identify key topics to be discussed, including the dialectics of local and transnational positionality, racialization and racialized experiences across borders, the complex relationship between sending and receiving countries, ethics in nonprofit education, and the complexities of volunteerism and national identity. This strategic project is an extension of our already powerful dialogical work as colleagues, and we look forward to sharing this radical methodology of knowledge production to inspire new, dynamic ways of approaching scholarship as a shared, transformative experience that values all voices and visions.

Description/Abstract of your Event: 

There has arguably been a consistent left position on American foreign policy since the nineteen-sixties and seventies, when the current international legal and political order crystalized in a particular way. What Michael Walzer has described as the left's "default position," includes the following: a "commitment to neutrality in all international and civil wars," and a consistently critical position of U.S. foreign relations. The decidedly post-imperial positioning of the left is, arguably, an isolationist positioning that leaves open the question of what international solidarity can look like. However, recent events with the Arab Spring and the brutal slaughter in Syria have sparked some debate and a call to self-reflection about what internationalism for the Left can look like in the present global order. We are being asked to reconsider what has been dogma for the left regarding international law and global politics. Our increasingly interconnected world and the political and economic reconfiguration of states have placed the left's default positions in crisis. Specifically, there has been a split of the international left on the question of Syria and the interpretation of U.S. and Russian intervention. Left critique of liberalism has contributed to destabilizing its hegemonic power. However, it seems that liberalism is being replaced with illiberalism. The main problem is how the left should respond in this moment of rising illiberalism globally and the reconfiguration of geo-political spaces and ideologies. This panel proposes a discussion of the questions that are becoming increasingly urgent for the left to reflect upon, especially from inside American power.

Some of the questions the panelists will address include what "we" think an American foreign policy should look like. What space there is for dissent and disagreement in the left on its relationship to other peoples especially during times of conflict. And whether or not the left should reconsider humanitarian intervention?

Description/Abstract of your Event: 

President Trump has placed immigrant communities at ground zero in his effort to blast our nation toward a nightmare future of racism and nativism. He is building upon groundwork for a massive federal crackdown laid during the George W. Bush Administration and expanded during the Obama Administration.

When the Department of Homeland Security was established, the new managers of the nation’s immigration enforcement machinery set about to enlist, entangle and commandeer state and local criminal justice agencies in a massive campaign to criminalize, capture, detain, deport – and in many cases, prosecute and imprison – the most vulnerable members of immigrant communities across the nation.

In 2005, the U.S. Department of Justice shifted its priorities and resources to sharply ramp up federal criminal prosecution of migrants for unauthorized entry to the US, resulting in a virtual explosion of contracting for private prison beds.

Prosecuting migrants is not a substitute for civil removal, but instead postpones that process and adds additional human and financial costs associated with their criminalization. Because these prosecutions have primarily been concentrated in five federal court jurisdictions located along the U.S. border with Mexico, they have remained the least publicized element of the immigration enforcement machinery. At the same time, they represent the most severe exercise of federal power in furtherance of immigration enforcement.

During 2017, almost 55,000 migrants—including some who may have valid asylum claims—were criminally prosecuted for improper entry or re-entry, accounting for 45 percent of all federal prosecutions. About half of these migrants were charged with 8 USC 1325, unauthorized entry (a misdemeanor that carries a jail sentence of up to 180 days). The other half were charged with 8 USC 1326, unauthorized re-entry after removal (a felony carrying up to two years in prison, or more if the migrant has a prior criminal record).

In April 2018, Attorney General Jeff Sessions directed the U.S. Attorneys in the border districts to impose a “zero tolerance” policy for prosecution of migrants entering the U.S. without authorization, warning that, “...illegally entering this country will not be rewarded, but will instead be met with the full prosecutorial powers of the Department of Justice.”

Our panelists will present a brief overview of the implementation of the DOJ’s migrant prosecution campaign; a personal recounting of its devastating impact on immigrant families; and a description of the strategies and tactics being used by organizers and activists to build community power for resistance to this onslaught.

Description/Abstract of your Event: 

Even as the last fifteen months have been described by various commentators as a unique phase of neo-fascism in the United States, there is little to suggest that the reigning manifestations and practices of white supremacy, imperial domination, and relentless capital accumulation are a sharp departure from the preceding few decades of the exercise of US state power. Yet, as good materialist thinkers, we must acknowledge that the current conjuncture marks specific iterations of authoritarian rule, resurgent forms of white nationalism, and particular modes of capital accumulation. Consequently, this panel will attempt to address the distinctive political contradictions of this moment. More importantly, at a time when protest movements, ranging from Black Lives Matter, the teachers’ strikes in West Virginia and Oklahoma, and the March for Lives against gun violence are center stage on the political landscape, it is vital that we take stock of the limitations and possibilities of these movements. Our panel will explore some of the following questions: Are there ways in which these movements can combine the promise of reform with the potential for revolution? What are the possibilities for student/worker alliances around the issues of gun violence and structural inequalities in the education system? How might the existing hopes of transnational solidarities be renewed and extended at a time when ongoing global conflicts are displacing millions across the world? How might our own forms of activism within our local communities address the urgent needs of this moment?