Puente Movement for Migrant Justice is our work to support migrant communities in Arizona including day laborers, undocumented people, mixed-status families, youth, and people most impacted by racial profiling and police/ICE joint tactics.
Our immigration work includes:
- A legal clinic to assist people facing deportation proceedings;
- Direct action and organizing against local anti-migratory laws and practices;
- Solidarity and community-building among migrant communities through Know Your Rights trainings, organizing education, and community meetings;
- Organizing our communities to advocate for the end of Police & ICE collaboration practices;
- Exposing human rights violations experienced by people in immigration detention facilities.
Our aim is for all impacted people in Arizona to have the knowledge, tools, and community resources to defend themselves against police/ICE tactics, and for all impacted people to have a safe space and political home within the Puente Movement.
For over 10 years, Puente has led the fight against local and federal anti-migratory policies while building a political home for Arizona’s most marginalized community members. In the last decade we have been able to stop the deportation of over 478 migrants and keep their families together. The Puente Movement for Migrant Justice has created the blueprint for frontline defense in our state and in the nation.
If you or your family member are facing deportation, please contact our legal clinic.
The Movement for Migrant Justice led to Puente’s founding in 2007 when a group of students, community members, activists, and organizers came together to fight then Maricopa County Sheriff Joe Arpaio’s racist, anti-migrant policies and practices. Puente stemmed out of the 32 Street Coalition who were organizing to fight back against the harassment and arrest of day laborers by off-duty Maricopa County Sheriff's officers.
We worked to secure a Department of Justice investigation into the Maricopa County Sheriff Office that targeted the misuse of police and ICE collaboration policies (287(g) and S-Comm). Arpaio abused these policies to lead a campaign of abuse against our people. Our advocacy work has contributed towards limiting the use of police/ICE collaboration laws in Arizona; Puente continues to fight abusive policies that tear families apart.
Learn more about our history here.
In 2010, the Puente Movement for Migrant Justice began ten years of advocacy against SB1070, one of the nation’s most egregious anti-migratory laws. The Support Our Law Enforcement and Safe Neighborhoods Act (SB1070) gave local law enforcement the discretion to ask any person to disclose their immigration status based on reasonable suspicion. The law’s passage meant that undocumented migrants would be forced to self-deport or end up in the crimmigration pipeline.
SB1070 was one of the most adverse immigration laws the United States had seen at the time, and it would become the blueprint model for other anti-migrant states to follow. Our community refused to accept the passage and implementation of this bill -- we fought back. Puente and countless other organizations and communities came together to create a unique model on how to fight back against 1070 and police and ICE collaboration. Our tactics included:
- Solidarity through Non-Compliance
- Barrio Defense Committees and Community Defense Courses
- Student Organizing against SB1070
- Art Movement against SB1070
- Alto Arizona Art Campaign
- The Sound Strike
- Human Rights Zones
Learn more about these tactics and about the 10 year anniversary of SB1070 here.