Trump Deportation plan: The New York ACLU and ACLU of Southern California filed the 44-page lawsuit on behalf of four not-for-profits.
“The Trump administration’s threats against immigrants run roughshod over basic fairness and due process,” Donna Lieberman, the executive director of the New York Civil Liberties Union, said in a statement. “For the many families who came here as refugees fleeing violence, deportation is a death threat.”
Activists on Thursday ramped up efforts to prepare by bolstering know-your-rights pocket guides, circulating information about hotlines and planning public demonstrations.
Vigils outside of detention centers and hundreds of other locations nationwide were set for Friday evening, to be followed by protests Saturday in Miami and Chicago.
Phil Murphy, the governor of New Jersey, said in a statement his government was reaching out to immigrant communities, highlighting legal aid and other resources.
Hillary Clinton criticized the plan on Thursday, when news of the raids emerged alongside reports that the president may try to force the US census process to include a question asking people if they are citizens.
Trump’s own immigration agencies were reportedly blindsided by the president’s stunning decision in late June to tweet about a law enforcement operation before it occurred. Five days later, he announced the raids would be delayed.
Trump, however, has done away with deportation priorities Obama put in place in his second term, and used anti-migrant rhetoric, which has created fear and instability in migrant communities.
Douglas Rivlin, the communications director of the advocacy group America’s Voice, said the raids were politically motivated and cruel. “The massive and glaring failure of the Trump approach on immigration gives this deportation operation the smell of desperation,” he said.