Ravi Ragbir and Other Immigrant Rights Defenders Testify at The Inter-American Commission on Human Rights

Adapted from a media advisory from the Center for Human Rights: University of Washington:

Prompted by efforts from immigrant rights leader Maru Mora Villalpando, the Inter-American Commission on Human Rights (IACHR) met in Washington, D.C. on December 5th to dialogue with the Government of the United States of America about the Situation of Human Rights Defenders of Migrants in the country. Prominent immigrants’ defenders from throughout the country, targeted by the Trump Administration for their human rights work, testifed before the Commission. The IACHR will hold its 170th Period of Sessions from December 3 to 7, 2018, in its headquarters in Washington, D.C., United States of America.

The University of Washington’s (UW) International Human Rights Clinic (IHRC) and Center for Human Rights (CHR) in collaboration with the North West Detention Center Resistance (NWDCR), New York University (NYU) Immigration Clinic, and Migrant Justice supported the leaders sharing their experiences and the impact of the infringement of freedom of speech on their work, their families and their communities. The organizations also presented the UW Center for Human Rights Report Secret Police: Access to information about immigration enforcement in the contemporary United States”. After the hearing the groups will hold a press conference to update the public and press.

Speakers: Immigrant activists and leaders, Alejandra Pablos, Shacorrie Tunkara, Maru Mora Villalpando, Janay Cauthen- Jean Montrevil’s wife-, Kike Balcazar, Ravi Ragbir, and members of the Universities UW Law School IHRC, UW CHR, NYU Immigration Clinic, University of Notre Dame, and National Immigration Project of the National Lawyers Guild (NIPNLG).

The hearing came after the United Nations and the Inter-American Commission expressed concern about the United States actions against immigrant leaders, calling the government to adopt measures to ensure an environment in which human rights defenders can work freely, without threat of retaliation.

The Inter-American Commission is and independent body of the Organization of American States, and has the mandate to promote respect for and to defend human rights in the region.

Access to the broadcast of the hearing can be found here. For in person coverage, find more info here.

 

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Click to read Alina Das’ live tweet thread from the hearing.
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Legal Update on First Amendment Case

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LEGAL UPDATE:

Federal Appeals Court Grants Immigrant Rights Activist Ravi Ragbir Stay of Removal

On November 1, 2018,  the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Second Circuit granted Ravi Ragbir a stay of removal days after hearing oral argument in Ragbir v. Homan, a First Amendment challenge to retaliation by U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) against immigrant rights activists. The court has not yet issued a ruling on the First Amendment claim. The stay ensures that Mr. Ragbir will not be deported while the case is pending.

Mr. Ragbir, Executive Director of the New Sanctuary Coalition, was abruptly detained by ICE in January 2018 for deportation based on a decade-old deportation order. A federal court in New York ordered Mr. Ragbir’s release later that month, and a federal court in New Jersey ordered a stay of removal in a pending case challenging the conviction underlying Mr. Ragbir’s deportation order. ICE has continued, however, to pursue Mr. Ragbir’s deportation, requiring him to report “for removal” if no stay was in place.

In February 2018, Mr. Ragbir, joined by New Sanctuary Coalition, CASA, Detention Watch Network, National Immigration Project of the National Lawyers Guild, and New York Immigration Coalition, sued ICE, arguing that ICE’s actions against Mr. Ragbir and other immigrant activists violated the First Amendment. In May 2018, after a federal court denied the plaintiffs’ request for preliminary protections pending the First Amendment litigation for Mr. Ragbir, the plaintiffs appealed to the Second Circuit and sought a stay while  appeal is pending. The Second Circuit granted a stay on November 1, 2018.

For further information on Mr. Ragbir’s case, please visit: https://istandwithravi.org/category/legal-updates/

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Media Advisory: Federal Appeals Court Set to Hear Oral Argument on Ragbir v. Homan, a First Amendment Case Challenging ICE’s Targeting of Immigrant Rights Activists

325px-Thurgood_Marshall_United_States_Courthouse_WTM3_NYU_FC_0026For Immediate Release

***Media Advisory***

New York, NY: On Monday, October 29, 2018, at 10 a.m., the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Second Circuit will hear oral argument in Ragbir v. Homan, a First Amendment case challenging the government’s retaliation against immigrant activists for speaking out against immigration policies. The plaintiffs of Ragbir v. Homan seek, among other things, a court order restraining the government from deporting and otherwise targeting immigrant activists based on their protected political speech.

The Government’s attempt to silence its critics is exemplified by its targeting of New York immigrant rights leader, Ravi Ragbir, who was surveilled, arrested, and flown to Florida for deportation, in defiance of the government’s own regulations, protocol and procedure. This targeting and retaliation of its critics is unconstitutional and has a chilling effect on all those who would speak out against the Government, both citizen and noncitizen alike.

Numerous immigrant rights groups, faith leaders, elected officials, and directly impacted individuals have submitted briefs in support of the plaintiffs in this case. Their briefing is available at https://istandwithravi.org/category/legal-updates/

Stanton Jones of Arnold & Porter will deliver oral argument in the case.  After oral argument, attendees and community members will gather outside of the courthouse for a press conference, featuring key figures in the lawsuit and in the community, including Mr. Ragbir, Mr. Jones and other members of Mr. Ragbir’s legal team, faith leaders, and The Hon. Tish James, Public Advocate for the City of New York.

What: A court hearing and press conference about whether the government can retaliate against people who speak out against immigration policies by targeting and deporting them.

When: Monday, October 29, 2018 at 10 a.m. (Ragbir v. Homan is the fourth case scheduled that morning)

Where: U.S. Court of Appeals for the Second Circuit, 40 Foley Square, Room 1703, New York, NY. A press conference will follow immediately after argument in Foley Square.

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Media Advisory: New Sanctuary Coalition and NYU Immigrant Rights Clinic to Hold First Amendment Teach-in

LafayetteAvPresExt1For Immediate Release

***Media Advisory***

(New York, NY) On Thursday, October 25, the New Sanctuary Coalition and NYU Immigrant Rights Clinic will hold a teach-in about the First Amendment rights of immigrants who speak out against the injustices and inhumanity of our immigration system.

Hosted at a Brooklyn church founded as a “temple of abolition” against slavery, the teach-in will be held in anticipation of an upcoming First Amendment case, Ragbir v. Homan, that will be heard in the Circuit Court of Appeals for the Second Circuit early next week. The plaintiffs of Ragbir v. Homan seek, among other things, a court order restraining the government from deporting and otherwise targeting immigrant activists based on their protected political speech.

Thursday’s teach-in will unpack immigrants’ constitutional right to free speech, even as the government lashes out against immigrant rights leaders and activists.

Ragbir v. Homan was filed by nationally recognized immigrant rights activist Ravi Ragbir, along with immigrant rights organizations New Sanctuary Coalition, CASA, Detention Watch Network, National Immigration Project of the National Lawyers Guild, and the New York Immigration Coalition (the “plaintiffs”).

Who: Speakers will include Congresswoman Yvette ClarkeRev. Kaji Douša, Senior Pastor at The Park Avenue Christian Church; Ravi Ragbir, Executive Director of New Sanctuary Coalition; Ramya Krishnan, Staff Attorney at The Knight First Amendment Institute at Columbia University; and William Perdue, Associate at Arnold & Porter. The teach-in will be followed by a Know Your Rights training for activists and public art program.

What: A First Amendment Teach-in, held in anticipation of a court hearing  about whether the government can retaliate by detaining and deporting people who speak out against immigration policies.

When: Thursday, October 25, 6:00PM – 9:00PM

Where: Lafayette Avenue Presbyterian Church, a church founded as a temple of abolition in the 1850’s. 85 S. Oxford St, Brooklyn, NY 11217

10/25 in Brooklyn: First Amendment Teach-In

FirstAmendmentTeachInImmigrant rights are under attack. How does the First Amendment protect immigrants who speak out against the injustice of the deportation system? How do we ensure that we protect the rights of all of our community members when we make our voices heard? Join us at Lafayette Avenue Presbyterian Church, a church founded as a temple of abolition in the 1850s, to learn about these issues and an upcoming First Amendment case, Ragbir v. Homan, that will be heard in federal court later this month.

Speakers include:

  • Rev. Kaji Douša, Senior Pastor at The Park Avenue Christian Church
  • Ravi Ragbir, Executive Director of New Sanctuary Coalition
  • Ramya Krishnan, Staff Attorney at The Knight First Amendment Institute at Columbia University

The teach-in will be followed by a Know Your Rights training for activists and a public art project. This event is sponsored by the New Sanctuary Coalition and NYU Immigrant Rights Clinic. Co-sponsors include NYU Sanctuary Coalition, Law@theMargins, and Jaime Lucero Mexican Studies Institute at The City University of New York Lehman College.

WHEN
October 25, 2018 at 6pm – 9pm
WHERE
Lafayette Avenue Presbyterian Church
85 S Oxford St
Brooklyn, NY 11217
United States

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Taller Sobre La Primera Enmienda:

¿QUIÉN TIENE LA PALABRA? ¡NOSOTROS! LOS DERECHOS DE LOS INMIGRANTES Y SU PRIMERA ENMIENDA

Los derechos de los inmigrantes están bajo ataque. ¿Cómo podemos proteger el derecho de los inmigrantes para organizarse en contra de las injusticias del sistema de deportación? ¿Cómo podemos proteger los derechos de todos los miembros de nuestra comunidad cuando quieren expresarse? Únanse a nosotros en la Iglesia Presbiteriana de Lafayette Avenue, una iglesia fundada como templo de la abolición en la década de 1850, para conocer sobre estos temas y el caso de la Primera Enmienda, Ragbir v. Hofman, que se escuchará en una corte federal a finales de este mes.

Los presentadores incluyen:

  • Rev. Kaji Douša, Pastor principal de la iglesia Cristiana de Park Avenue
  • Ravi Ragbir, Director Ejecutivo de New Sanctuary Coalition
  • Ramya Krishnan, Abogada del Instituto Knight de la Primera Enmienda en la Universidad de Columbia

El taller será en inglés y se ofrecerá interpretación simultánea.
Después del taller habrá una capacitación de los derechos de los activistas y un proyecto de arte público. Este evento está patrocinado por New Sanctuary Coalition e Internado sobre los Derechos de Inmigrantes de NYU.

¿CUÁNDO?
Octubre 25, 2018 de 6pm – 9pm
¿Dónde?
Lafayette Avenue Presbyterian Church85 S Oxford StBrooklyn, NY 11217

Legal Update: Ravi and Immigrants’ Rights Organizations File Reply Brief in First Amendment Lawsuit

On Friday, October 5, 2018, Ravi and immigrants’ rights organizations (the “Appellants”) filed their reply brief in Ragbir et al., v. Homan et al. The brief—which outlines the outrageous and unlawful targeting of Mr. Ragbir and other immigrant rights’ activists in retaliation for their vocal opposition to our broken immigration system—was filed in anticipation of oral argument which is schedule for Monday, October 29, 2018 at 10:00am before the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Second Circuit. Community members are encouraged to attend.

In addition, and preceding oral argument, the NYU School of Law Immigrant Rights Clinic and Mr. Ragbir’s Defense Committee, will be hosting a First Amendment Teach-In entitled, Whose Speech? Our Speech! Immigrant Rights and the First Amendment, in anticipation of oral argument on Thursday, October 25, 2018 from 6pm – 8pm. The teach-in will be held at Lafayette Avenue Presbyterian Church in Brooklyn, New York, a church founded as a temple of abolition in the 1850s, which served as a stop on the Underground Railroad. Details and speaker bios forthcoming.

Link to Reply Brief: https://ravidefense.files.wordpress.com/2018/10/ragbir-ca2-merits-reply-10-05-18.pdf