Skip to content Skip to navigation

How allies can defend against ICE raids

News & Commentary  |  By Kristin Kumpf, Aug 8, 2019
AFSC/San Diego

The Trump administration has ramped up Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) efforts to arrest and deport immigrants across the United States – tearing apart families and communities and stoking more fear among immigrants, who have been subject to numerous attacks under this administration.

No one should be detained and deported. And it’s critical that we do all that we can to protect our community members to ensure they live in safety and peace that we all deserve. 

Here are eight ways that allies can stand with immigrant communities against ICE today: 

1. Tell Congress: No more funding for ICE and Border Patrol! 

For decades, ICE and Customs and Border Protection (CBP) have separated families and terrorized our communities. Our federal budget should not be used to fund President Trump’s anti-immigrant agenda. As Congress and the president continue to negotiate a 2020 budget, tell your representatives: Cut funding to ICE and CBP to defund hate! 

2. Download and display our posters in your community to help create welcoming spaces for all.

Spread the messages “Keep loved ones together: Stop ICE and Border Patrol,” “Abolish ICE,” and “Sanctuary Everywhere” using our posters and social media graphics. Use them for actions, display them in public spaces, or share them with your networks on Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, and other social media. 

Photo: Iowa CCI 
3. Share our Know Your Rights guide in your community.

We all have rights and deserve to be treated with dignity and respect, even when confronted by ICE or other law enforcement. Our online resource (in English and Spanish) provides an overview of your rights at home, in your car, and in detention as well as how to prepare for these emergencies. 

4. Join local efforts to respond to immigration raids and provide support to individuals and families affected. 

AFSC works with communities in several cities that have formed rapid response teams to report, track, and observe and document ICE presence as well as deter mistreatment by immigration enforcement. We also support local efforts to help individuals affected and their families, including through legal assistance and providing for their basic needs. Contact local immigrant rights organizations in your area to find out about opportunities to get involved. 

5. Support organizing and advocacy to end collaboration between ICE and local law enforcement. 

Do research to find out if your local law enforcement partners with ICE. Numerous reports have documented the negative impacts when local law enforcement collaborates with ICE, which leads to widespread racial profiling, denies immigrants due process rights, and fuels distrust between immigrant communities and law enforcement. In places like New Jersey and California, AFSC has played a critical role in stopping local law enforcement from cooperating with ICE to round up and detain immigrants. 

6. Raise immigration issues to candidates on the campaign trail. 

During election season, you have a unique opportunity to get candidates on the record about issues that are important to you — and to influence their opinions. You can do this by seeking out a candidate (for Congress, state legislatures, or any public office) and asking them where they stand on issues like immigration. Such efforts can generate media coverage that helps inform the public and elevate the importance of calling for humane immigration policies. 

7. Offer sanctuary to people facing or fearing deportation. 

Religious and faith communities have a long history of providing sanctuary to those in need. Today, many congregations are working to ensure all people feel safe and welcome in their communities. Is your congregation is considering creating a sanctuary space for community members facing deportation? If so, read this account from someone who helped his Quaker meeting offer sanctuary and watch our webinar “How to offer sanctuary.” 

8. Make a donation today.

Support AFSC’s ongoing work to support communities organizing to protect human rights and overcome injustice across the U.S. and around the world. 


Click here for a printable version of these 8 ways for allies to defend against ICE raids.

About the Author

Kristin Kumpf is the director of AFSC's Human Migration and Mobility.