Undocumented immigrants plan to fight back against Trump's deportation raids

FOX 32 NEWS - A series of raids and arrests by immigration police across the country is stoking fears in Chicago’s immigrant community.

Now, they're planning to fight back.

The feds say the raids are nothing out of the ordinary, but immigration advocates believe they're targets of President Trump.

FOX 32: How long have you been in Chicago?

“This year is going to be 25 years,” Sarah said.

Sarah doesn't want to show her face, but she wants to tell her story. The undocumented Mexican immigrant raised a family in Chicago and continues to work cleaning office buildings. But like thousands of others in Pilsen, she feels like she's living on the edge.

"Well I've been afraid because I could lose my job... be deported.... what is afraid for me is I could leave my son,” Sarah said.

U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement say 235 people were taken into custody in the Midwestern region last week. The majority of those illegal immigrants have criminal records.

ICE says while that number is higher than usual, there is no special enforcement or targeted crackdown. But on Sunday morning, President Trump tweeted otherwise: "The crackdown on illegal criminals is merely the keeping of my campaign promise."

"Well this is fear. This is exactly what we're concerned about in the community,” said Arturo Jauregui of Pilsen Law Center.

Jauregui says Trump's tweet and pictures lead many to believe the government is trying to remove far more than just those who commit criminal acts.

"The problem is when you throw a net out there that is too wide, you're not only going to catch the fish that you want but you're going to catch some dolphins and people  who have not done anything here,” Jauregui said.

One way they're planning to fight back at the Pilsen Law Center is they're recruiting attorneys willing to work on a pro-bono basis to handle immigration cases.

Community leaders are also passing out cards advising undocumented residents of their legal rights.

"We're asking people to organize themselves, organize their money, organize their documents, organize their birth certificates…to be prepared for any circumstance,” said Carlos Arango of Casa Aztlan Cultural Center.

Sarah also made a plea to the president.

"That he thinks twice about what he's doing right now. Not to send us back to Mexico because Mexico is really dangerous for us now,” Sarah said.

So far, 30 Chicago attorneys have signed up to provide free legal work for people arrested on immigration violations.

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