Portland DSA Statement on Occupy ICE Raid
Yesterday, Portland DSA and supporters of Occupy ICE went to city hall to demand city council stop our city’s continued cooperation with ICE. Members of Portland DSA, Direct Action Alliance, and the undocumented community testified before the council. You can view the video of our co-chair’s testimony here: https://youtu.be/4h8refkGqNs
While Commissioners Eudaly and Fritz offered words of support, they did not commit to any actual action that would immediately halt the city’s cooperation with ICE. Commissioners Saltzman and Fish remained silent during the entire presentation, refusing to comment when asked. While Mayor Wheeler was not present due to a planned absence, the other commissioners reassured the community that his directive for the Portland Police to stay clear of the Occupy ICE encampment still stood.
This morning, federal officers from the Department of Homeland Security swept the driveway at the 4310 SW Macadam ICE facility in Portland, arresting nine protesters, as the Portland Police Bureau blocked roads and actively prevented protesters and journalists from getting through to the camp. Despite promises from the Mayor and City Council, the Portland Police Bureau is complicit in ICE’s actions in evicting the camp and allowing ICE agents to reclaim the building and continue their reign of terror.
We want to remind the City Council of our demands, which include establishing an office of immigrant rights and fully funding legal services, withdrawing from the Joint Terrorism Task Force, allocating no resources to assist in the eviction of Occupy ICE PDX, and ceasing all cooperation with the Department of Homeland Security in surveilling and arresting activists protesting ICE’s presence in Portland. We appreciate the gesture of good faith from the commissioners who allowed us to testify yesterday. But good faith is not enough. We demand that City Council discuss these issues as official agenda items at their next meeting on July 11th. If our city commissioners truly want to stand up for immigrants, they will not only prioritize the discussion of the crisis of ICE in our community, but they will also actually do something about it. As long as they do nothing, they are complicit.
Eight of those who were arrested by the DHS this morning have been released, and we are hoping for the ninth to be released soon. They have been issued fines and need support. Please support them and any future arrestees by donating here: https://rally.org/OccupyICEPDX