Boggs Center – Living For Change News – May 13th, 2019

May 13th, 2019

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Thinking for Ourselves

To Shelter One Another
Shea Howell

The Trump administration is ramping up its efforts to attack local, democratic, compassion efforts to protect people who are seeking safer and more secure lives. Recently the administration announced a new programto allow local law enforcement officers to arrest and detain immigrants, even if local policies prevent them from doing so. Local officers will be encouraged to arrest people based on ICE warrants.

This latest effort is sharpening the contradiction between local governments, where people are most likely to make their will known, and the consolidation of federal force.

The American Civil Liberties Union (ACLU) has condemned this measure. A statement issued by Lorella Praeli, the ACLU’s deputy political director, said this is the “latest scheme by ICE to enlist local police in its abusive deportation agenda.” “The agency explicitly aims to subvert the will of local communities that have passed ordinances to prevent exactly this kind of cooperation between police and ICE.” They also said the ACLU “urge(s) local law enforcement to resist this dangerous proposal and stand by their commitment to the communities they serve.”

Meanwhile, right wing republicans in Lansing are joining this federal effort to attack local community initiatives. House Bills 4083 and 4090, perversely called Local Law Enforcement Protection Acts, eliminate sanctuary cities and would force local governments to cooperate with federal officials investigating a person’s immigration status. These bills are working their way through committees.

State Rep. Mari Manoogian, a democrat from Birmingham, responded saying:

The individuals pushing this legislation want us to believe these policies are in our community’s best interest, but that could not be further from the truth. We have seen the negative effects similar policies have had around the country — further eroding the fragile trust between immigrant populations and local law enforcement and disincentivizing community members from coming forward when they witness or are the victims of a crime. That makes us all less safe in the long run. If public safety is truly the goal, we need to work to foster an environment characterized by cooperation and togetherness, not finger-pointing and division.
Across the country, local communities are taking principled stands for the dignity and rights of people. From California to Michigan, city councils and county officials are cancelling contracts with US Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE), which rents bed space from local, county, or state-owned jails across the country.

Since last summer at least five counties in California have severed ties with ICE and 4 counties in Michigan have done the same. In response, Trump is accelerating private prisons outside the purview of public policies. As local communities withdraw support, private corporations are seeing new opportunities to profit from human bodies.

In response to the cancelling of contracts for city and county jails to house people detained by ICE, private detention may actually expand under a new deal with ICE. Just a few months after Governor Whitmer cancelled a private prison deal negotiated by Snyder, a new  private prison company announced a 10-year federal contract to house non-citizens sentenced for immigration offenses or other federal crimes in a facility it owns in Baldwin. The Florida based Geo Group Inc. said it plans to “reactivate” its 1,800-bed North Lake Correctional Facility under a contract with the Federal Bureau of Prisons. In spite of its questionable record, GEO expects to generate roughly $37 million a year in incremental annualized revenues from the deal.

We need to resist these efforts to establish private prisons, to turn people’s bodies into profit centers for corporate powers. We need to assert our responsibilities to welcome people to our communities, to protect each other and to work together for justice. We must find new and creative ways to shelter one another.

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Detroit City Council hits pause on Fiat Chrysler Project

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Detroit City Council hits pause on Fiat Chrysler Project

Last week, City Council Planning and Economic Development Committee took the first step toward regaining the confidence of Detroiters by putting our health and welfare first over that of large multi-national corporations like Fiat Chrysler. As a result of 100s of phone calls to council expressing alarm around the impact of the plants expansion on the quality of the air our children and seniors need to breathe and the lack of transparency and community engagement around the land deals, the PED committee hit pause on this rushed project.

Thank you to all Detroiters who reached out the Economic Development Corporation (EDC), the Planing and Economic Development Committee and Detroit City Council about the Fiat Chrysler benefits package and land transfers.

Today, both the EDC Board and the PED Committee failed to move the land transfers and benefits package forward for a final vote by the committee of the whole.

By hitting the pause button City Council Members have an opportunity to hold FIAT Chrysler accountable around the environmental and health impacts relations to their planned expansion.

Now there is an opportunity for the Neighborhood Advisory Council to go back to the table and fight for a better CBA package for residents.

Fiat Chrysler is a global corporation that earned $4.1 billion in 2018. They have only committed 8.8 million dollars in community benefits on a project that will use up to $280 million in public investment.

Next steps:

Continue to keep the pressure on Detroit City Council, demand that Fiat Chrysler not only address environmental health impacts and negotiate a bigger and better CBA

Detroit City Council Contact Information

Brenda Jones, Council President, At-Large
313-224-1245 – @DetCouncilPres
bjones_mb@detroitmi.gov
Janeé L Ayers, At-Large
313-224-1027 – @Ayers4Detroit
ayersj@detroitmi.gov
James Tate, District 1
313-224-1027 – @CouncilmanTate
councilmembertate@detroitmi.gov
Roy McCalister Jr., District 2
313-224-4535 – @RoyMcCalisterJr
councilmemberMcCalister@detroitmi.gov
Scott Benson, District 3
313-224-1198 – @Scottinthe3rd
bensons@detroitmi.gov
André Spivey, District 4
313-224-4505 – @AndreLSpivey
councilmanspivey@detroitmi.gov
Mary Sheffield, President Pro Temp, District 5
313-224-4505 – @MsMarySheffield
councilmembersheffield@detroitmi.gov
Raquel Casteñeda-Lopez, District 6
313-224-2450 – @Raquel4Detroit
councilmemberraquel@detroitmi.gov
Gabe Leland, District 7
313-224-2151 – @GabeLeland
lelandg@detroitmi.gov

More Details: 

FCA CBA Update 2
http://detroitpeoplesplatform.org/2019/05/fiat-chrysler-cba-update/

FCA Call to Action #1
http://detroitpeoplesplatform.org/2019/05/call-to-action-vote-no-on-the-fiat-chrysler-cba/

FCA EGLE Permit to Install Approval
http://detroitpeoplesplatform.org/2019/04/fiat-chrysler-air-permit-approval-with-additional-monitoring-and-community-benefits/

FCA Environmental Concerns and Demands
http://detroitpeoplesplatform.org/2019/04/fca-expansion-environmental/

FCA CBA Update 1
http://detroitpeoplesplatform.org/2019/04/fiat-chrysler-expansion-community-benefits-update/

You’re Invited! 
 2019 SEMIS Summer Institute  
 June 25, 26, 27 Reflecting and Exploring
August 6, 7 Engaging and Planning

During this year’s institute we will focus on deep cultural analysis and place-based experiences related to interconnectedness, interdependence, and resilience. We will ask ourselves how the Great Lakes and humans in their watersheds are inextricably linked. Together, we will continue to “seek complex answers, in complex places.” (quote by Amy B. Demarest)

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REGISTER TODAY!

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