A surge in arrests of undocumented immigrants has prompted warnings from immigrant advocates and even the Mexican government. Reports the New York Times:
Susannah Volpe, a managing attorney at Ayuda, an immigrant legal services group in Washington, said she had noticed what seemed to be roundups of people, like those without criminal records, that the government had not previously paid much attention to.
“These are agents going into apartment buildings or agents going to worksites,” said Ms. Volpe, who had a client arrested, along with five others, at a construction site in Washington last week. “This is new.”
School principals in Los Angeles have been sent a checklist of things to do in case immigration agents turn up. The Mexican government even warned “the entire Mexican community” in the United States “to take precautions and to keep in touch with their nearest consulate,” after the deportation of a woman who had previously been allowed to remain in the United States.
The Operation Cross Check enforcement action did not include any arrests in Arkansas Friday, according to news reports. But immigrants in Arkansas, and everywhere, are increasingly wary as President Donald Trump delivers on his promise to get tough.
There’s an element of rueful humor amid the personal toll of the increasing roundups of people working in the U.S. without authorization. It’s the look of surprise on the face of, say, California farmers who backed Donald Trump.
Many assumed Mr. Trump’s pledges were mostly just talk. But two weeks into his administration, Mr. Trump has signed executive orders that have upended the country’s immigration laws. Now farmers here are deeply alarmed about what the new policies could mean for their workers, most of whom are unauthorized, and the businesses that depend on them.
“Everything’s coming so quickly,” Mr. Marchini said….He said that as a businessman, Mr. Trump would know that farmers had invested millions of dollars into produce that is growing right now, and that not being able to pick and sell those crops would represent huge losses for the state economy. “I’m confident that he can grasp the magnitude and the anxiety of what’s happening now.”