Phoenix, AZ – On March 30th, Adriana Garcia Maximiliano, from Center for Neighborhood Leadership, was arrested in a civil disobedience action to stop Arizona from adopting a new batch of anti-immigrant legislation. As of early this morning three of the protesters arrested yesterday have been released. Despite the Judge’s recommendation to be released she is on an Immigration Customs Enforcement (ICE) “hold” pending transfer to ICE Headquarters despite her DACA status.
Before the action Adriana wrote the following statement:
I got involved in the movement for human rights because of my family. I don’t want my little sisters to continue to grow up in a state that passed SB1070 type laws. I don’t want my parents to be separated from us because of such laws, especially after my dad’s deportation.
I think about the danger my parents put themselves in every day. I know that my dad would have an extremely hard time in ICE because of his record with them and it terrifies me. To my horror, today’s Arizona Legislature is repeating the sins of the past.
We as immigrant advocates and activists have been working diligently to kill anti-immigrant bills at the legislature. We have met with legislators from both sides. We have tried meeting with Governor Ducey. We have garnered letters against these bills from the education, faith, and the legal sectors. Some Chambers of Commerce have asked the governor to veto these hateful bills. But Governor Ducey has remained silent.
Now, there is too much at stake. HB2451, which would lengthen prison sentences for our people was sent to the Governor’s desk late yesterday (Monday) and the other bills—designed to strengthen SB 1070 and create two separate, but unequal justice systems—are expected to pass both chambers shortly.
Since getting involved in 2011, I have participated in a variety of efforts to stop these racist efforts from reaching this point again – always with my family in mind. I’ve canvassed countless times to do voter registration and voter turnout. I’ve done community education and organizing to make sure our community stayed informed and active. While I was at Congressman Grijalva’s office, I helped gather signatures and lobby for the first congressional letter that was sent to President Obama asking him to expand DACA. Locally, I have been part of efforts to end collaboration between law enforcement and ICE. We have made progress but our community is still grave danger of being targeted, racially profiled, criminalized, incarcerated and deported.
I made the decision to participate in a civil disobedience action at Governor Ducey’s office because I have seen him quickly sign other conservative bills as soon as they arrive to his desk. I cannot sit and wait as the Governor fails to respond to the communities call for a veto on HB2451 and the rest of the anti-immigrant legislative proposals on the way to his desk.