Good evening. I’d like to begin by saying that “[W]e are living through a very dangerous time. Everyone in this room is in one way or another aware of that. We are in a revolutionary situation, no matter how unpopular that word has become in this country. The society in which we live is desperately menaced, not by [Putin], but from within. So any citizen of this country who figured himself as responsible—particularly those of you who deal with the minds and heart of young people—must be prepared to ‘go for broke.’ Or to put it another way, you must understand that in the attempt to correct so many generations of bad faith and cruelty…you will meet the most fantastic, the most brutal, and the most determined resistance. There is no point in pretending that this won’t happen.” Continue reading
Video via Sandi Bachom:
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
January 29, 2018
Today, the federal district court for the District of New Jersey heard arguments on whether it has the power to grant a stay of deportation in Mr. Ravi Ragbir’s case pending a decision on his underlying lawsuit which challenges the legality of his sole conviction and sentence. Counsel for Mr. Ragbir are hopeful that the court will exercise its inherent authority to grant the stay as it will ensure Mr. Ragbir’s ability to meaningfully participate in his proceedings.
Information on the temporary stay granted in relation to the First Amendment Lawsuit, Ragbir v. Homan, here.
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE: February 9, 2018
Immigrant Rights Leader Ravi Ragbir and Community Organizations File First Amendment Lawsuit Challenging the Targeting of Immigrant Rights Activists Federal Government Agrees to Stay Mr. Ragbir’s Deportation Temporarily
New York, NY — Immigrant rights leader Ravi Ragbir, together with the New Sanctuary Coalition of New York City, CASA de Maryland, Detention Watch Network, the National Immigration Project of the National Lawyers Guild, and the New York Immigration Coalition, filed suit (Ragbir v. Homan) in federal district court in the Southern District of New York today to challenge the recent targeting of immigrant rights activists by federal immigration officials. Pending briefing and consideration of a preliminary injunction motion, the government has agreed to stay Mr. Ragbir’s deportation temporarily. Continue reading
Mr. Thomas Decker
Field Office Director
New York Field Office
U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement 9th Floor, Suite 9-110
26 FederalPlaza New York, New York 10278-0004
Dear Director Decker:
I am writing to urge you to stay the removal of a beloved New York City community leader, Ravi Ragbir.
In his more than 20 years as a lawful permanent resident in the United States, Mr. Ragbir has made significant contributions to the city’s civic life and has been widely recognized for his work as a speaker, educator, and organizer on issues related to immigrant rights. He and others like him have played a crucial role in making New York a beacon of diversity and inclusion for so many. Forcing him to retum to Trinidad would not only affect his wife and child – who are U.S. citizens – but would adversely impact the larger immigrant community. The breadth and depth of Mr. Ragbir’s ties in our city should weigh heavily in favor of a stay of his removal.
Despite your office’s claim to prioritize for deportation those individuals who pose a public safety risk, these actions and others have raised serious concems about how ICE is targeting immigrants. Over this past year, New York City has experienced a spike in ICE activity, especially in courtrooms – an area most New Yorkers consider safe.
These activities not only create fear in immigrant communities, but undermine public safety. New York City is the safest big city in America because of the trust between law enforcement and communities, including immigrant New Yorkers. When ICE takes aggressive action against leaders in immigrant communities, it casts a chilling effect on immigrants’ willingness to engage with govemment and law enforcement generally, undercutting that trust.
The safety and interest of New Yorkers should be central to any determination concerning Mr. Ragbir, or other individuals arrested by ICE. Therefore, I request that ICE exercise its discretion to permit Mr. Ragbir to remain with his family in New York.
Bill de Blasio Mayor