Next week three of our friends, who were arrested in resistance of ICE, will be going to court. Please come out to support them.
Last August four people with The FANG Collective were arrested at the Bristol County House Corrections after peacefully blocking the entrances to the prison. The action was carried out in solidarity with ICE detainees who were on hunger strike to protest the dire conditions at the facility. Bristol County officials, including Sheriff Hodgson, reacted to the action with violence, resulting in two demonstrators receiving traumatic brain injuries. More information about that action can be found here.
Amory, one of the four people arrested at the action has been sentenced to ten days in jail. Last month Holly, one of the other people who were arrested as part of the action, served a jail sentence in Bristol County. Another person began their sentence last week. Sherrie, who is the fourth person being prosecuted for taking action, could begin their trial this month.
On July 16, Amory will begin serving a ten day jail sentence in Bristol County, MA.
On July 17, Sherrie is making a motion to move the location of their trial. This could be their final court appearance before the trial begins.
We are asking people to come to the New Bedford District Court at 8:45 on both days to show our support for Amory and Sherrie!
On July 19, Lee is seeking to have her charges dismissed after being violently arrested during a meeting between ICE and the Bristol County Sheriff’s Department. She was violently arrested after peacefully speaking up. More information on that action can be found here.
Sheriff Hodgson, the head of the Bristol County Sheriff’s Department is a close ally of Trump and is known for his violent and racist policies. Hodgson is facing several lawsuits and investigations focused on corruption and the awful conditions at the facilities he oversees.
If you need a ride to the courthouse on either day, post on the Facebook event pages (links for the 16th and 17th here). We also are requesting donations for this, as we plan to bring petty cash to help other community members who need to pay off small fines in court.
During the last week of June, we carried out a Week of Action to #ShutDownICE. The week of action was organized to time up with the expiration of ICE’s 287(g) program which allows for local law enforcement to carry out the duties of ICE agents. We took action to raise awareness about the program, and to demand that agencies in Massachusetts and elsewhere not renew their 287(g) agreements.
Below is a day by day recap of the actions that we took. Please DONATE to support our resistance.
Targeting UMB Bank and the Wyatt Detention Facility
On Monday, June 24th we organized a social media storm that targeted UMB Bank and their CEO Mariner Kemper. Earlier this year UMB sued to force the Wyatt Detention Center in Central Falls, Rhode Island to continue to hold people detained by ICE. The Board that governs the Wyatt had agreed to end their collaboration with ICE after community protests, but was forced to continue to work with ICE after UMB’s lawsuit.
Later in the day on Monday, we visited Deming Sherman’s office in Providence to demand that he do everything in his power to allow lawyers to enter and provide legal representation to people detained by ICE at the Wyatt facility. Deming Sherman is the court appointed “Special Master” assigned to ensure that UMB Bank and other investors continues to profit from ICE detentions at the Wyatt. You can watch the video of the action here.
Disrupting the Plymouth County Police Officers Association
On Tuesday we were in Kingston, Massachusetts where we disrupted the monthly gathering of the Plymouth County Police Officers Association. At the gathering was Plymouth County Sheriff Joseph McDonald, who has signed on Plymouth County to both a 287(g) and an IGSA agreement with ICE. Through the IGSA agreement hundreds of people are held at the Plymouth County House of Corrections on behalf of ICE.
We disrupted the meeting and directly asked Sheriff McDonald to end his collaborations with ICE. We took action in honor of the lives of Sophorn Sam and Cuthbert Bonnie, and the lives of many unknown names, that were uprooted or lost at the hands of Plymouth County Sheriff Joseph McDonald’s collaboration with ICE. Here’s the video of the action.
Demanding that the Bristol County District Attorney Stop Prosecuting Activists
On Wednesday we held a call-in day to Bristol County District Attorney Thomas Quinn demanding that he stop prosecuting people for resisting ICE, and instead investigate corrupt and racist Bristol County Sheriff Thomas Hodgson.
Last August four people were arrested after peacefully blocking the entrances to the Bristol County House of Corrections. One person has already served a ten day jail sentence for taking action, and two others will be serving jail sentences soon. Sherrie, a co-founder of FANG, is facing trial for their role in the action later this summer.
You can still CALL Bristol County District Attorney Thomas Quin and urge him to stop prosecuting activists and to investigate Bristol County Sheriff Thomas Hodgson instead: 508-997-0711
Blockading the Massachusetts Department of Corrections
On Thursday we blockaded the headquarters of the Massachusetts Department Of Corrections. Three entrance gates were locked while the main entrance was blocked by folks locked into concrete blockades. The Massachusetts Department of Corrections has a 287(g) agreement with ICE, meaning that anyone who enters a State prison in Massachusetts can be detained on immigration charges.
The blockade lasted for several hours. One person was arrested and charged with trespassing, disorderly conduct and resisting arrest. You can watch the initial livestream of the action here, and view more photos of the action here.
ICE Kills Trans Women – Taking Action in Cape Cod on the 50th Anniversary of Stonewall
Friday June 28th marked the 50th anniversary of the beginning of the Stonewall Police Riots, an uprising that played a crucial role in the history of trans and queer resistance.
We took action in Cape Cod that day to commemorate this anniversary and draw attention to state violence against trans women of color who continue to be marginalized, harassed and murdered at striking rates. We hold solidarity with trans and queer folks resisting state violence, and want to recognize and honor Roxsana Hernández Rodríguez and Johana Medina León, two trans migrants recently killed by ICE.
Barnstable County’s Sheriff James M. Cummings signed a 287(g) agreement in November 2017, despite pushback in the county. Sheriff Cummings continues to face substantial criticism for his collaboration with ICE in Cape Cod and its surrounding islands; an area famous for its support of white gay communities.
Cape Cod and its white gay pride are complicit in the continued violence faced by LGBTQ2S+ peoples of color, and must return to Pride’s Radical Roots of Resistance to state violence by demanding an end to its 287(g) agreement. You can view more images of the action here.
Rally Against ICE at the Bristol County House of Corrections
On Saturday over 150 people rallied at the Bristol County House of Corrections demanding that the Bristol County Sheriff’s Department end their collaborations with ICE. Bristol County has both a 287(g) and a IGSA agreement with ICE. Read more about the rally here.
Thanks to everyone who supported the Week of Action to #ShutDownICE! If you are able to, please pitch in with a donation to help cover the costs of this mobilization.