CT US Senators and Reps on Healthcare

by Protect Our Care Connecticut

U.S. Sens. Richard Blumenthal and Chris Murphy and Rep. John Larson, Joe Courtney, Rosa DeLauro and Jahana Hayes took action to protect Medicaid and help people gain access to health insurance.

In April, Sens. Blumenthal and Murphy joined 35 of their Senate colleagues in signing a letter to Congressional leadership urging them to include “strong measures to secure continuity in health care coverage” for people who are currently uninsured or underinsured in the next relief package. The letter specifically highlighted the need to strengthen Medicaid, re-open ACA marketplace enrollment, and provide COBRA assistance to those who have lost their employer-sponsored health insurance.

Reps. Larson, Courtney, DeLauro and Hayes joined more than 150 members of the House in urging Congressional leadership to continue to require that states which accept higher Medicaid reimbursements from the federal government during the coronavirus crisis maintain their current Medicaid program without cuts to eligibility, known as “maintenance of effort” requirements.

Can you take a moment to thank and encourage them?

Sen. Richard Blumenthal (860) 258-6940
Sen. Chris Murphy (860) 549-8463
Rep. John Larson (1st District, CT) (860) 278-8888
Rep. Joe Courtney (2nd District, CT) (860) 886-0139
Rep. Rosa DeLauro (3rd District, CT) (203) 562-3718
Rep. Jim Himes (4th District, CT) (203) 333-6600
Rep. Jahana Hayes (5th District, CT) (860) 223-8412

Protect Our Care CT: jmcnichol@universalhealthct.org
Protect Our Care CT, 290 Pratt Street, Meriden, CT 06490

Lots of Fish launches “50 Fish” in honor the 50th year of Earth Day

Runoff Art starts with 50 Fish!

Lots of Fish launches “50 Fish” in honor the 50th year of Earth Day

In confluence with the 50th anniversary of Earth Day, Lots of Fish (LOF) launches 50 Fish! The Runoff Art pilot program is working with a team of artists, scientists, and educators (Team Fish) to produce a multi-faceted Art & Environmental Education program, engaging citizens to reduce pollutants entering our waterways through stormwater runoff. May: Adapted to COVID-19 protocol, the education program will begin in New Haven Schools. July – Oct: fish art painting on 50 storm drains by youth & community groups.

50 Fish! kicks-off LOF’s Runoff Art pilot in New Haven. In coordination with the New Haven Dept. of Engineering, we are painting art on 50 storm drains throughout the city with local artists, schools, and Youth@Work. Runoff Art is a “Public Outreach & Education” campaign that helps the City of New Haven meet the EPA MS4 permit requirements by engaging citizens of all ages in activities that support the health of our local waterways. Sustainable CT is matching dollar-for-dollar all contributions to the 50 Fish! project and COVID-19 adaptation until May 1st.

The adapted program starts with school and online presentations and musical performances.
6 main components optimize community engagement:

1. Art with QR codes installed on 50 Storm Drains and up to 20 rain barrels
2. User-friendly map (GIS) to host a variety of informative and interactive experiences
3. COVID-19 Adapted – Educational presentations and musical performances
4. COVID-19 Lessons and Citizen Science activities for New Haven teachers
5. COVID -19 Adapted Surveys to quantify educational benefits and citizen response
6. NEW – COVID adapted EarthDay 50 celebration – “Did You Know? “ social media campaign.

https://lotsoffish.info/water promoting the hashtags #EarthDay50Fish #50WaterFacts #50FishFacts

About Lots of Fish: Lots of Fish (LOF) is an Art & Environmental Education project based in New Haven, CT. Initiated in 2018, LOF is the brainchild of artist and environmental advocate JoAnn Moran. Through her dedicated effort, LOF has been engaging and exposing city youth and community members through a series of environmental art and impact projects, events, presentations, and public awareness campaigns. Lots of Fish hosts school-year and summer youth employment programs to create “Artful projects that reduce pollution.”

Lots of Fish will be swimming on a billboard near you!

Barrett Outdoor has graciously donated a colorful fish-filled billboard.

Barrett Outdoor is happy to support Lots of Fish projects and the celebration of the 50th year of Earth Day!

For more info:
Lots of Fish (LOF)
LotsofFish.info
Contact JoAnn Moran – Artist /Director JoAnn Moran
(203) 298-2628
Art25LOF@gmail.com

Volunteers Needed: Westville Mask Project Needs Your Help Building Protective Equipment

Friend and neighbor Linda Schultz is coordinating a protective mask project and is asking for our help!

“Do you sew? Do you have a sewing machine and an iron?

Westville women and men have coordinated a home sewing program to produce Yale New Haven hospital masks. These pocket masks lengthen the use of surgical masks, and the design is approved by our New Haven hospital network. Patterns and materials are available. We are asking you to provide the cutting and/or sewing skill. As a community, we will be completing and distributing at least a hundred masks each week for our frontline medical personnel. Let’s do it!”

Linda already has a great team of volunteers who have begun work, but they could use more help. Please use the Google form: https://forms.gle/XRBy8WDEEpf6p8Cv8
if you are interested in helping.

Food Assistance Resources During the Coronavirus (COVID-19)
Coordinated Food Assistance Network has put together this online guide (English and Spanish). It is updated very frequently.  https://bit.ly/nhvfoodcovid

CFAN has also developed a pantry delivery system for low-income folks who can’t get out during this crisis. It’s called Pantry to Pantry. If you know anyone in need, they can call the hotline: 888-910-2960.

The Library Is Dedicated to the New Haven Community

by Sharon Lovett-Graff, New Haven Free Public Library

Although the New Haven Free Public Library is closed during the pandemic, here are some ways we are serving the community during the COVID-19 pandemic. The library has long served as a “second responder,” stepping up for the community during times of need. It has operated as a warming center when freezing weather struck and as a cooling center during heat waves. From weather events to school closings, the library has provided shelter, computer access, and social services as well as arts entertainment and cultural activities for adults and children in these times of need.

Librarians as “Maker Movement” leaders have quickly responded to the COVID-19 crisis. Our Tinker Lab staff have been putting the library’s 3-D printers and sewing machines to use manufacturing masks for the Yale New Haven Health Centers and the Public Works Departments of the City of New Haven, as well as for staff and volunteers serving meals to the homeless at the Downtown Evening Soup Kitchen and St Thomas Moore Chapel. Although closed to staff and public, the library had some of our 3-D printers and sewing machines moved temporarily to the homes of staff in order to print shields and masks. The library is donating its labor and the materials to this effort, including making sure makers and what they are making comply with specifications for the production of shields and masks.

Although library branches are currently closed, library staff are working hard to be a resource and continue to support the needs of the community. Staff have regular contact with patrons via phone and email, making sure that everyone is stocked up with things to read, watch, listen to, learn, and do. Below is a quick “top ten list” of all the services the library is providing at this time, just to give you a sample.

Top 10 Ways to Use NHFPL from Home

• Social distancing? Your electronic library card is your key to a world of online learning and entertainment for free! Questions? Need an e-library card? Call us and leave a message at (203) 946-8130 or email refdesk@nhfpl.org. For Young Minds and Family Learning call (203) 946-8129 or email youngminds@nhfpl.org.

• Get absorbed in a great story. We’re all in need of some escapist fiction these days! Ebooks, audio books, and graphic novels for adults, children and teens are all available on OverDrive, RBdigital, Freading, Hoopla, TumbleBooks, and TeenBookCloud.

• Enjoy a family-friendly movie night. Tons of films are available for free download with your library card using Kanopy and Hoopla. All you need is the popcorn!

• Start a daily art practice with Creativebug. Learn to sketch, draft a pattern for a new dress, embroider, knit, scrapbook, and so much more.

• Seek help with job hunting. JobNow provides many valuable resources including job coaching, resume preparation and live interview practice.

• New Haven time travel by perusing historic images of our city in the Local History digital collections.

• Research an alternate career path or gain new skills. Take a free course on Lynda.com and learn to be an Excel expert, digital marketer, bookkeeper, graphic designer, screenwriter or comic illustrator. The offerings are endless!

• Exercise! Hoopla contains workout videos, including yoga and aerobics, and dance lessons. Learn to fox trot, salsa or rumba!

• Meet (virtually) with a local entrepreneur! Our Entrepreneur-in-Residence Sammi Williams and Collab partners are offering one-on-one virtual appointments to support your small business or non-profit start-up.

• Need more family fun activities? Plenty of virtual engagement to explore with Young Minds and Family Learning! View Story Times with stories, songs and fingerplays, take a tour of the San Diego Zoo or Boston Children’s Museum, and get reading recommendations and homework help for all ages!

Job Opening at CT Roundtable on Climate and Jobs

CRCJ’s Board of Directors is launching the search for a new Executive Director/Lead Organizer, and we ask that you help us spread the word to your colleagues and networks to ensure that we get a strong and diverse pool of candidates, who will be excited about this opportunity to lead the organization and carry the work forward.

The next Executive Director and Lead Organizer of CRCJ will guide a statewide organization committed to protecting the climate while creating good local jobs and working for justice. The new leader will replace the founding Executive Director who has guided the organization since 2012.

A short summary of the organization and position is located below. The complete position description and contact information for interested candidates may be found at: CTClimateandJobs.org/exec_search
We encourage you to send questions or suggestions of potential candidates or sources to John Harrity, Board Chair at exec.search@ctclimateandjobs.org. The search will remain open and active until filled, but initial interviews are anticipated to begin in early May. Thank you.

The Connecticut Roundtable on Climate and Jobs seeks a dynamic and passionate Executive Director and Lead Organizer who will take this innovative nonprofit to its next level. The new leader will replace the founding Executive Director, who has successfully led the organization since 2012.

Overview of the Organization: The Connecticut Roundtable on Climate and Jobs (CRCJ) builds alliances among diverse constituencies to combat climate change, create jobs and promote racial, economic and environmental justice. CRCJ embraces diversity as a source of power and engages in collective action to ensure that Connecticut provides leadership in creating a clean energy future.

CRCJ believes the climate crisis presents an opportunity to build thriving local economies that are not only more sustainable but also more just and equitable.

ctclimateandjobs.org/wpcontent/uploads/2020/04/CRCJ-Position-Description-FINAL2-Apr-2020.pdf

Planting a Nonviolent Future: New Haven Mothers Honor Victims of Gun Violence

by John Besche, Yale Daily News, April 24, 2020

Nestled between West Rock and the West River, a plot of land on Valley Street is being transformed from nondescript park land into a memorial garden that will be the first of its kind in the US. The Memorial Garden for Victims of Gun Violence in New Haven, set to open late this summer, will be the first space to serve explicitly as a memorial garden for victims of gun violence, as a space to mourn, reflect and heal.

The cohort of mothers in New Haven who spearheaded this project wanted more than a cemetery to memorialize and honor their children who were taken by gun violence. They believe that this garden will be a gift not only for their children’s legacy, but to a city badly beaten by decades of bloodshed. They hope that it may even force people to lay down guns for good.

“As a mother, when you get the phone call that says your child has been shot and is on the way to the hospital, or if you make it to the hospital and they walk out and say, ‘We lost him,’ you’re hopeless,” Marlene Pratt, one of the women behind the memorial, said in an interview with the News.

To read the complete article, go to: https://yaledailynews.com/blog/2020/04/24/planting-a-nonviolent-future-new-haven-mothers-honor-victims-of-gun-violence.

Excerpts from Looking Back: Justice for Stephanie and Paul, One Year Later

by Mackenzie Hawkins, Yale Daily News, April 16, 2020

In the early hours of the morning on April 16, 2019, Hamden police officer Devon Eaton and Yale Police officer Terrance Pollock fired 13 and three shots, respectively, at Stephanie Washington and Paul Witherspoon, an unarmed black couple in their car.

The day of the shooting, life on Yale’s campus continued as normal, spare a morning email from YPD Chief Ronnell Higgins and an evening one from Vice President for Human Resources and Administration Janet Lindner. … But beyond campus borders, a movement was growing. Activist groups, including People Against Police Brutality and Black Lives Matter New Haven, organized an evening rally outside the Hamden Police Department, drawing a crowd of about 200. Later that night, organizers protested at the site of the shooting on Dixwell Avenue and Argyle Street.

“I think we all built, during this time, the foundation for a relationship rooted in solidarity,” People Against Police Brutality organizer Kerry Ellington told the News in an April 14 interview. “I think all the different communities that were involved wanted to — and still want to — see an end goal where both officers are held accountable for their reckless actions on April 16 of last year.”…

Over the past year, student and community activists have collaborated to organize around last April’s shooting and a broader set of issues — building relationships that have transcended the incident that spurred them.

“There have always been iterations of students who have come through to this city who have really understood the significance of connecting with the community,” Ellington told the News. “So I don’t want to disregard students that I’ve worked with and organized with in the past. … But [the shooting was] definitely, I would say, a significant moment for both black and brown Yale students on campus and black and brown residents in New Haven — a moment that was clear to come together, clear to make a united call.”…

“To see a group of young black Yale students sit down and learn from [local activists] was amazing,” Elm City Vineyard Lead Pastor Joshua Williams ’08 DIV ’11 said in an April 13 interview. He was involved in race-related student activism during his time at Yale and said that New Haven’s black community had played a pivotal role in movements like the one to change the name of Calhoun College.

Yale students showing up for New Haven in the wake of the shooting, he said, was a “twin moment” paired with dining hall worker Corey Menafee smashing a window in protest of Grace Hopper College’s former namesake. New Haven residents have consistently fought for Yale students of color, he said, and students followed and reciprocated in the Founders’ Room that Thursday.

“In terms of an urgent response, it was the first time I had seen black students have this incredible deference to black New Haven — [asking] black New Haven to lead [so that Yale students] could follow,” Williams told the News.

To read the full article which includes much information about the follow-up to the present, go to: http://features.yaledailynews.com/blog/2020/04/16/looking-back-justice-for-stephanie-and-paul-one-year-later

Medicare for All CT News

Stephan Ramdohr, Medicare for All CT

At this time, Medicare for All CT is considering three dedicated project groups for:

  1. A webinar, encouraging attendees to contact our U.S. Reps directly via social media etc., about the need for Medicare for All;
  2. The ongoing campaign for municipal resolutions. In February, New London city council unanimously passed a Medicare for All resolution. Now let’s have more cities and towns follow New London’s lead;
  3. Possibly putting on a (virtual?) statewide forum similar to the one last August as well as plan office visits with federal and state legislators & conduct outreach to other national, Connecticut and local stakeholder groups.

The newspaper article about New London passing a Medicare for All resolution is here: www.theday.com/article/20200207/NWS01/200209505.

At this time, our meetings are on-line. Please contact us with your ideas and suggestions by e-mail at Medicare for All CT medicare4allct@gmail.com, and by telephone at (857) 472-0694, or on Facebook at Medicare for All CT.

How You Can Help At-Risk People in Our Community

by Mark Colville, Amistad Catholic Worker

Friends,

I reach out today with an urgent call to come together as advocates, caregivers, organizers, activists and allies, in response to the ongoing unmet needs of some of the most at-risk people in the New Haven community. As the coronavirus pandemic has unfolded, many concerned people in the area have intensified our work with people experiencing homelessness, and from that perspective, we’ve seen the city and some of its institutions take bold and proactive steps. At the same time, there is a growing fear that those efforts are falling short in terms of providing safe spaces for significant numbers of people who still lack the wherewithal to follow the statewide directive to shelter in place.

The latest initiative has been to move all of the people who were using the city’s homeless shelters into hotel rooms, a move that was completed within the past three weeks. Thanks to a concerted raising of voices, we have now seen the city commit to expanding that initiative to include all individuals who identify as experiencing homelessness, regardless of whether or not they typically use the shelter system. This is a very positive development, and many of us have been working hard to get those folks signed up for the rooms as they’re made available.

The problem we face now is that the ”shelter model” of service delivery is simply being transposed onto these hotels. This includes supervision, security measures, invasions of privacy and disciplinary regimens which are in fact the reason why so many people refuse to stay in shelters in the first place. Regardless of how anyone feels about such refusals, this project of moving everyone from the street into hotel rooms will not be sufficient, at least in its current form, to accommodate everyone- particularly, for example, those who are mentally ill and/or active drug users.

In response, the Amistad Catholic Worker is joining an effort already underway to erect a tent city, in an as-yet undetermined open space somewhere relatively close to the city center. This is being organized collectively and with a fair degree of urgency. It will integrate the requirements of social distancing and sheltering in place, but the rules and regulations will be developed and agreed upon by those dwelling in that space. Thus the responsibility for its operation in a safe and sanitary way, maintaining the peace and respecting the privacy of its residents, will also be assumed collectively.

We are now looking for camping supplies, especially tents, sleeping bags, warm blankets and tarps. If you can donate any of these or other items, please contact me: (203) 645-5417 (call or text); markcolville9761@gmail.com. For anyone interested in taking an active role in getting the project off the ground, I’m happy to discuss that as well.

Stay safe everyone. Gratefully,

Mark Colville

Due Date for May Articles for Progressive Action Roundtable Newsletter: Sunday, April 19

Dear PAR Contributors,

We hope you are all well at this difficult time for our world.

Because of the COVID-19 pandemic, the May issue of the PAR newsletter will be on-line only. Even within these dire circumstances, many organizations are still active and making plans. Video conferences substitute for meetings and gatherings. The sharing of information via the internet is quite intense.

Please send us information about your group and what you’re doing. Help our readers find out about ways they can connect with you. In addition to articles (350 words max), internet links to articles and photos are welcome. E-mail us at parnewhaven@hotmail.com.

***Help inspire others through your commitment! ***

The deadline for the May Progressive Action Roundtable Newsletter is Sunday, April 19.

We’re looking forward to your articles! Thank you for your help in creating this community newsletter.

Wishing you all the best as we manage through this chaos.

– PAR Planning Committee

Progressive Action Roundtable is on Facebook

For automatic PAR updates, sign up on our website: par-newhaven.org

If your group has a website, please add our link to your webpage.

To renew your own subscription or to buy a subscription for a friend, the rate is $13 for 10 issues. Please make the check out to PAR and mail it to

PAR, P.O. Box 995, New Haven, CT 06504

21-year New Haven Sunday Vigil Paused Until Further Notice Due to Covid-19

Ponder this: in a crisis of this magnitude, there aren’t close to enough ventilators and
other medical supplies including personal protective equipment to go around. The federal
government and the hospitals are talking about rationing health care. As always, the
elderly, poor, disabled and otherwise vulnerable are the ones whose lives will be
sacrificed first.

Yet the military manufacturers remain open, grinding away at the production of weapons
of mass destruction.

If this disturbs you, do something about it. Among other things, let your senators and
representatives know that they will not be re-elected unless they act now to ensure
production and distribution of all necessary equipment to save everyone’s life that
can be saved.

The government must act immediately:

  1. USE THE DEFENSE PRODUCTION ACT TO MOBILIZE AMERICAN
    MANUFACTURERS TO SWITCH TO MAKING MEDICAL EQUIPMENT.
    2. USE THE DEFENSE LOGISTICS AGENCY TO HELP COORDINATE
    EQUITABLE DISTRIBUTION OF THESE SUPPLIES AND A MASS ROLL-OUT
    OF COVID-19 TESTING.

PLEASE, SPEAK OUT NOW. Call: U.S. Sen. Chris Murphy: (860) 549-8463;
Sen. Richard Blumenthal: (800) 334-5341; U.S. Rep. Rosa DeLauro: (203) 562-3718
TWO WAYS TO CONTACT THE PRESIDENT Mon.-Fri., 9 a.m.-5 p.m.
White House Switchboard: (202) 456-1414; For email: http://www.whitehouse.gov/contact
Always leave your name, address and phone number.
ALL OUR LIVES DEPEND ON THIS.
CONTINUE TO PRACTICE SOCIAL DISTANCING. THINK AND ACT FOR
THE COMMUNITY.
Stay strong. We hope to see you soon.
RESIST THIS ENDLESS WAR
The New Haven Sunday Vigilers
March 2020
https://newhavensundayvigil.wordpress.com

PAR Newsletter to remain active, online

Dear Readers:

Circumstances in our daily living will change quickly as the coronavirus continues to make its way through our cities and towns, states and countries. Be informed, check with your local media, town hall, etc.

At this time the PAR newsletter will only be available on-line due to the various restrictions in place.
The regularly occurring events we advertise will most likely not be happening. Check with the sponsoring organizations or venues before you go out.

There are a number of agencies and websites to turn to for information about the coronavirus and places to go for help. Here are some of them:

Call 211 for resources, information on food pantries, medical assistance, and various hotlines.
Yale New Haven Health has set up a call center to respond to questions about Covid-19, give assessments to patients by phone or video, and determine whether someone needs to be tested. The number to call is (833) ASK-YNHH. That’s (833) 275-9644.

https://medicine.yale.edu/intmed/news-article/23180/

The United Way of Greater New Haven has set up a Volunteer webpage. There are organizations that need your help now because of increased needs and volunteer shortages. The webpage will be updated frequently. Please go there to see how you can volunteer to help local organizations and/or your neighbor: https://uwgnh.org/volunteer-needs

https://portal.ct.gov/Coronavirus
https://covid19.newhavenct.gov/

Regional Groups and Support Networks:
Mutual Aid/Support Waterbury, Bridgeport, New Haven and Surrounding Areas
https://www.facebook.com/groups/501197987165893/?fref=nf

• document for sharing resources that helps you connect with others around physical, emotional, educational and social needs.
http://bit.ly/2Wg2pvc
o It is available in Arabic: المساعدة المتبادلة في ووتربيري، بريدجبورت، نيو هافن
o And Spanish: ESPAÑOL- Ayuda Mutua Hartford, Waterbury, Bridgeport, New Haven

New Haven Area Mutual Aid
https://www.facebook.com/groups/639466263512268

 

Enroll NOW in Health Insurance Through Access Health CT!

by Protect Our Care CT

Because of the coronavirus, Access Health CT, Connecticut’s health insurance exchange, has established a Special Enrollment Period for uninsured people. This Special Enrollment Period will run from Thursday, March 19 through Thursday, April 2. Coverage will start on April 1 for those who enroll.

Normal qualification rules apply and federal subsidies are available to those who qualify for them.

Enrollment is by phone only. Call (855) 365-2428, Monday – Friday, 8 a.m.-5 p.m.
For details on this new Special Enrollment Period: https://learn.accesshealthct.com

A reminder: Qualified individuals and families can apply for Medicaid through Access Health CT at any time during the year.

Meet SalamTalk App: Independent, Conversation-Driven News

by Shoshana Lovett-Graff

Over the past few months, the world has been skyrocketed into pandemic: misinformation about coronavirus has spread quickly, and people across the world are anxiously trying to decipher social media posts, government warnings, and mainstream media in order to access real people’s experiences in crisis zones. The spread of fake news and biased reporting during the coronavirus crisis is indicative of the mistrust in news generally – a 2016 Gallup poll shows that only 31% of Americans trust the national news. In conflict zones, there is an added complication: each side gets caught up in its own narrative and is unable to see past its own media scope. It’s clear that a new type of journalism is needed: one that acknowledges truth as multifaceted and complex, and seeks to eliminate a middleman motivated by politics or profit. SalamTalk, a new media platform for citizen journalism, wants to fill this gap.

SalamTalk focuses on facilitating dialogue and citizen journalism across Israel and Palestine, allowing anyone to be a journalist through virtual conversations and reports transcending borders. The peer-to-peer network used by SalamTalk allows for direct conversation, which keeps conversations secure and encrypted. Users can filter their conversations by nationality, location, and languages spoken, and decide to have a free-form conversation about any topic they choose, or use guidelines provided by experts. After the conversation, people rate their conversational partner on openness, reliability, aggression and inconsideration. The citizen journalism platform operates through an incentivized peer-review system.

The platform works at the intersection between personal and political, asking questions like:
what happens when nameless statistics become real faces? What happens when political information is directly addressed in conflict zones, instead of skirted around? SalamTalk acknowledges that we can only make the best judgment of the truth when we have access to multifaceted, personal experiences.
SalamTalk is run by an all-volunteer network spanning the US, Germany, The Netherlands, Israel, Palestine, and more.

For more information, please visit the SalamTalk website. Sign up to the newsletter or social media for latest updates, and contribute to the crowdfunding campaign to get the platform off the ground.

Rally Demands End to ICE Agent Arrests of Undocumented Immigrants in Connecticut Courthouses

Excerpt from interview with Ana Maria Rivera-Forastieri, co-director of the Connecticut Bail Fund, recorded and produced

by Melinda Tuhus for Between The Lines/BTLonline.org.

Immigrant rights advocates protested outside the Connecticut Judicial Branch in Hartford on March 9, demanding that ICE – the federal Immigration and Customs Enforcement officers – stop arresting undocumented immigrants inside the state’s courthouses. Activists point out that neighboring states of Massachusetts and New York have prohibited ICE arrests in their courts.

Maintaining that the state’s courts are serving as stalking ground for ICE agents, protesters made several demands on the office of state court administration. The Immigrant Bail Fund reports that bonding out immigrants who have been arrested in court is the most common avenue by which they learn about arrests. And the Immigrant Defense Project reports that in New York City, arrests within courthouses has soared 1100 percent since Donald Trump became president, up from much smaller numbers under President Obama.

ANA MARIA RIVERA-FORESTIERI: We have several demands. One of them is that the judicial branch has the full authority to enact a policy that prevents them from coming in, and there are several states that have done that, including our neighbors in New York and Massachusetts. So they could institute a policy today saying Immigration is not allowed to come in and arrest people unless they have a warrant, which is what they require of any other law enforcement agency. So we’re saying, “No special treatment for ICE.”

In addition to that we’re saying reparations for families that have been impacted by this issue. And we’re also very worried because of the Trust Act now, the Department of Homeland Security has subpoenaed several states for information about people they didn’t release because of Trust Act policies, and so the state of Connecticut is considering whether or not they’re going to respond to these subpoenas, which run contrary to the spirit of the Trust Act and why we did it in the first place. I mean, if they honor these subpoenas, then what is the point of the law, which we worked so hard to pass?

For more information on the Connecticut Immigration Rights Alliance on Facebook, visit
Facebook.com/CTImmigrantRightsAlliance.

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