Nationwide deportation raids worry U.S. immigrant communities

World Today

Across the U.S., authorities have begun conducting raids targeting undocumented immigrants that have been ordered by courts to be deported from the country. The raids are expected to target roughly 2,000 illegal immigrants. But in some cities, including Chicago, the move has caused anger and resistance.

CGTN’s Dan Williams explains.

It may have looked like business as usual in Chicago’s Little Village, but for many in this predominantly Latino community, there was a heightened sense of anxiety on Sunday morning.

The long-threatened deportation raids by U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement were scheduled to begin with ICE officials saying they would target some 2,000 undocumented immigrants across the United States.

But Chicago’s Mayor, Lori Lightfoot sent a different message by telling the community here that she stood shoulder to shoulder with all Chicago residents regardless of legal status.

“People appreciate that they don’t feel abandoned,” Chicago Mayor Lori Lightfoot said. “That their neighbors are there for them. Whether it is just to give them words of assurance, that’s the kind of efforts that’s going on at the grassroots level and I think that really speaks to the incredible nature of our communities all across the city.”

Chicago has long been considered a sanctuary city. Which means city authorities and the police will not cooperate or share information with ICE officials. Despite that, many residents here remain deeply concerned.

Nora Quinones is among those who fear a raid from ICE. She is an undocumented migrant. Her husband was detained by ICE officials in May.

“I’m scared as I have kids here. I have six kids. All U.S. citizens. And I am afraid that one day, I get pulled over too,” Quinones said. “And I’ll be the same way as my husband. I am afraid I will go to the store and not come back.”

The ICE raids are expected to continue through the week ahead but the impact on families and communities could have much longer and deeper reverberations.