Transgender Law Center and Southerners On New Ground joined a broad coalition of LGBTQ organizations in endorsing the #Not1more Deportation campaign protests and marches that occurred on April 4-5, 2014. Among the petition’s signers: One Colorado, Equality California, GetEQUAL Action, National Center for Lesbian Rights, and TransOhio.
According to a news release distributed by the 50-plus organization coalition:
Among the two million immigrants deported by the Obama administration—1,100 people deported every day, and 34,000 people caged in immigration detention centers every single night—are countless LGBTQ individuals and their family, friends, and loved ones. Under the current system of detention and deportation, LGBTQ immigrants, especially transgender women of color, often experience horrific treatment within immigration detention centers, including violence, deprivation of necessary medical care, dehumanization and assaults on basic dignity, psychological torture in solitary confinement, and rape.
A recent study demonstrated that transgender women survivors made up 20 percent of substantiated sexual assault claims in immigration detention. Many detained LGBTQ immigrants simply give up and accept deportation rather than continue to fight for the asylum that they qualify for under existing law because their detention conditions are so unbearable.
The organized effort also asked for swift action from President Obama.
“We also call on President Obama to end Secure Communities and other programs which funnel immigrants into the deportation machinery through local law enforcement, particularly those that experience biased policing based on race, sexual orientation, and/or gender identity. Too many of our community members end up in deportation proceedings because they are arrested after calling police for help in a domestic violence situation because the officer made assumptions about what intimate partner violence looks like,” the statement read. “Too many transgender women of color are deported because of pretextual arrests for drug possession or sex work leading to criminal charges being immediately dropped and transfer to immigration detention. President Obama has the power to stop these programs so that our non-citizen community members do not live in fear that any minor interaction with police could lead to their deportation.”
The organizations concluded:
“As those living and working in the intersections of LGBTQ and immigrant identities, we join immigrant activists across the country to say that two million deportations is two million too many and to call on President Obama to act immediately for Not One More Deportation!”
The full list of signatories were: Transgender Law Center, Southerners on New Ground, AIDS Legal Referral Panel, Association of Latina/os Motivating Action (ALMA), BreakOUT!, Colorado Anti-Violence Program, Community United Against Violence, Domestic Violence Project at the Urban Justice Center, El/La Para TransLatinas, Equality California, Equality New Mexico, Forward Together, GetEQUAL Action, Immigrant Youth Justice League, Invisible to Invincible: Asian Pacific Islander Pride of Chicago (i2i), Latino Equality Alliance, Lavender Youth Recreation and Information Center (LYRIC), LGBT Law and Immigration Projects at NYLAG, LGBT Rights Committee of the Hispanic Lawyers Association of Illinois, L.O.C.A.S.-Latinos Organizados por un Cambio Social (Greater Birmingham Ministries Latino LGTBQ initiative), Media Literacy Project, National Center for Lesbian Rights, National Center for Transgender Equality, National Gay and Lesbian Task Force, National Latina Institute for Reproductive Health, National Queer Asian Pacific Islander Alliance, New Mexico GSA Network, One Colorado, Our Family Coalition, Out4Immigration, Progressive Leadership Alliance of Nevada, Queer Detainee Empowerment Project, Qulture, Red Circle Project, San Francisco Trans March, Santa Fe Mountain Center, Southern Arizona Gender Alliance, Southwest Women’s Law Center, Sylvia Rivera Law Project, Tennessee Transgender Political Coalition, Third Wave Fund, Transgender Resource Center of New Mexico, The TransLatin@ Coalition, TransOhio, United Latin@ Pride, and Wingspan.