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Heartland Alliance’s National Immigrant Justice Center (NIJC) is deeply concerned about reports, and the continued lack of clarity, surrounding a botched U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) raid at a Chicago home where a federal immigration officer shot a family member of an individual they were allegedly seeking to arrest.

“Our thoughts are with the family and community impacted by this tragedy. Americans, and certainly Chicagoans, deserve a full accounting of what happened,” said NIJC Executive Director Mary Meg McCarthy. “This shooting has exacerbated fears in Chicago neighborhoods and immigrant communities across America who are coping with hostile rhetoric from the administration and rapidly escalating threats and enforcement tactics. The ICE raids and enforcement practices we are seeing from the administration do not keep anyone safe. Everyone in the United States, no matter what their immigration status, has rights and the violation of those rights is entirely un-American. ICE and its officers must be held accountable when things go wrong."

NIJC remains committed to working with Chicago’s immigrant families to defend their rights in the harsh and complex immigration system. Through the Chicago Legal Protection Fund, NIJC provides legal consultations on a weekly basis in Belmont Cragin, the northwest Chicago neighborhood where the shooting occurred. To schedule an appointment, individuals may call NIJC at (312) 660-1370 or email immigrantlegaldefense@heartlandalliance.org. Community groups also are invited to contact NIJC to schedule legal information sessions and to share NIJC’s Know Your Rights materials about what individuals should do if they encounter ICE in their home or in the community.