New Mexico Cities Host 'Lights for Liberty' Vigils
Friday, July 12, 2019
ALBUQUERQUE, N.M. – Two days before mass raids targeting thousands of undocumented families are expected to begin on Sunday, thousands of people will be on the streets tonight to protest what they consider inhumane conditions faced by refugees in the United States.
At least four New Mexico cities, including Estancia, are taking part in the nationwide "Lights for Liberty" vigils. Our Revolution New Mexico Co-founder Margarita Mercure Hibbs has helped organize the Estanica vigil and says, until photos were released earlier this month, it was difficult to understand how bad the conditions really are.
"While we've been learning about the horrible atrocities that the women and the children are going through, the conditions – which are just are just completely beyond anything we ever imagined – it's one thing to hear about 'em, but it's another thing to see the graphic pictures," says Hibbs.
Immigration and Customs Enforcement raids ordered by the Trump administration are planned in 10 cities across the U.S. on Sunday. New Mexico cities are not targeted, but families in Denver could be detained and children may be separated from parents.
The Lights for Liberty vigil in Estancia is at Arthur Park from 6 to 9 p.m.. Other New Mexico vigils are scheduled in Albuquerque, Santa Fe and Taos.
Estancia is home to a county jail that closed two years ago for lack of use, but was reopened in May by the federal government, mostly to house asylum-seeking migrants detained by ICE. Hibbs says the news media has helped bring attention to the conditions for women and children in ICE custody, but it's unclear what the men may be experiencing.
"We have to bring attention to the fact that our own government policies are causing trauma to people, regardless of their age, their legal status," says Hibbs. “The fact of the matter is, it's not a crime to seek asylum, it's a human right."
CoreCivic, which runs the Torrance County Detention Facility, is one of the largest private detention companies in the country and collected $459 million from ICE in 2018.
The Trump administration says the intent of the raids will be to deter migrants from coming to the U.S./Mexico border. It government estimates there are a million people in the country with removal orders.
get more stories like this via email
LANSING, Mich. - High utility costs are a major burden for Michigan's low-income residents, and a new study says they have an impact on their health…
TALLAHASSEE, Fla. - A new report shows an effort by investor-owned utilities in the Sunshine State to block the growth of rooftop solar. The …
Health and Wellness
By Troy Pierson / Broadcast version by Mary Schuermann reporting for the Kent State-Ohio News Connection Collaboration. As marijuana becomes more …
SALT LAKE CITY - With rising numbers of people targeted in hate crimes and related violence, a new report analyzes the hate-crime laws in each state…
BOSTON - Educators' unions are calling on the state to support their efforts to ensure in-person learning in the fall keeps students, teachers…
HARTFORD, Conn. - In Connecticut, more than 460,000 people care for close friends or family members who can't manage on their own - and their …
ALBUQUERQUE, N.M. - Millions of Americans soon could find eviction notices on their front doors, but New Mexico renters will not be among them - as …
Health and Wellness
CONCORD, N.H. - New Hampshire advocates for affordable healthcare access want Congress to lower prescription costs by allowing Medicare to negotiate …