Statement on Renewed ICE Efforts to Deport Immigrants Fleeing Violence in Central America


May 13, 2016 | Chicago, IL

We at Erie Neighborhood House are dismayed by yesterday’s announcement that Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) will renew its efforts to apprehend and deport undocumented immigrants living in the United States after fleeing violence in Central America.

Experience reminds us that ICE is notorious for conducting home raids and showing little regard for the welfare of families, and reports indicate that the agency will target women and children in its renewed attempt at mass deportation. This strategy is both misguided and inhumane, criminalizing vulnerable individuals and spreading fear within the immigrant community while doing nothing to address the root problems causing patterns of mass migration.

According to the Illinois Coalition for Immigrant and Refugee Rights (ICIRR), more than 100,000 individuals—many of whom are women and children—have arrived in the U.S. from Guatemala, Honduras and El Salvador alone over the past 2 years. These 3 countries are rife with political corruption and violent crime, and it is our firm belief that the U.S. government has a responsibility to show compassion to refugees arriving at our border.

We are therefore joining fellow immigration advocates throughout Illinois and across the country in condemning ICE’s deportation policy and its plans to ramp up enforcement efforts.

Families and community members who witness ICE raids are encouraged to call ICIRR’s Family Support Hotline at (855) 435-7693 and visit for more information on what to do in case of an ICE raid.

Our own Citizenship and Immigration office at Erie House will host a Know Your Rights workshop on Tuesday, May 31, from 6:00 to 7:00 pm at 1347 W Erie St, Chicago IL 60622.

We are also prepared to provide information, resources and support to individuals affected by the recent announcement; for more information, please contact Jane Lombardi, Citizenship and Immigration coordinator at Erie House, at or by calling 312-563-5800.

Kirstin Chernawsky, Executive Director

PDF Download PDF of statement

Erie Neighborhood House (ENH) is a 501(c)3 not-for-profit organization that reaches 18,000 people annually, empowering them to build better lives while strengthening their communities. ENH offers Chicago’s Latinx and diverse low-income residents a range of community-based education programs. With forward-thinking leadership, ENH is committed to continuing its legacy of cost effective, award-winning programming. For more information, please visit

Media Contact

Brian Paff

Director of Marketing & Communications
(312) 432-2239

Stay Connected

Get our e-newsletter
Share this Page