Marches and Actions
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Travel Advisory for Noncitizens Traveling to Washington, DC for Rallies, Protests, or Actions: 8 Things Immigrants Can Do
We anticipate that more and more noncitizens may want to engage in political protest in Washington, DC. The National Immigration Project of the National Lawyers Guild (NIPNLG) supports the political rights of noncitizens, and believes it is critical to prepare appropriately if you plan to visit Washington, DC by plane, car, bus or train.
Knowing the risks and preparing for them should be part of the planning process for every group or delegation traveling to Washington, DC. We strongly suggest putting together a solidarity plan with your members or colleagues. In our experience, having a conversation about solidarity planning enables an engaging political education conversation on its own.
In addition to the tips on the reverse side of this page, we urge you to contact organizations who have a strong history in direct action.
8 Ways to Prepare if Traveling to Washington, DC for Marches or Actions
- CREATE A “SOLIDARITY” PLAN amongst travelers in the event that your vehicle is stopped by police or immigration. NIPNLG offers trainings on solidarity plans. Please contact email@example.com for details.
- SIGN A DHS PRIVACY WAIVER / G-28 FORM: Make sure a trusted person or a legal worker/lawyer has DHS privacy waivers signed by you and a witness. The privacy waiver allows a third party such as an organization, Congressional office, or media to ask questions to ICE officers about a person’s arrest, immigration case, or deportation. If a person has an immigration lawyer, make sure the person has a signed and current Form G-28. The G-28 is a government form that identifies that you are represented by a lawyer. Links to privacy waivers and G-28: https://www.ice.gov/doclib/news/library/forms/pdf/60-001.pdf and https://www.uscis.gov/sites/default/files/files/form/g-28.pdf
- REMAIN SILENT; CONTACT AN ATTORNEY: Distribute laminated cards to everyone in the group to enable all to invoke the right to remain silent and right to an attorney- preferably carried around your neck. Download cards here: http://norml.org/pdf_files/freedom_card.pdf and https://www.nilc.org/issues/immigrationenforcement/everyone-has-certain-basic-rights/
- LET THE DRIVER INTERACT WITH LAW ENFORCEMENT: Only the driver or the designated legal worker/lawyer should be speaking in any law enforcement interaction. The driver is required to present a driver’s license and proof of insurance/registration of vehicle. Passengers should be trained under a solidarity plan or have a plan in place regarding interactions with law enforcement.
- NAME YOUR VEHICLE: It may be useful to put a name on the vehicle for the drive to Washington, DC. U.S. Border Patrol and law enforcement are known to target large unidentified vans on interstates for immigration status checks. For example, you could label the van or car as a “Civil Rights Caravan” or your organizational name. Decisions on vehicle labeling should be made on a case-by-case basis after an evaluation of the pros and cons.
- COMPLETE IMMIGRATION INTAKES: Everyone should complete immigration intakes before the trip begins. They should be kept with a trusted person in the organization and placed in a secure location. (Do not bring the intakes on the trip, but they should be easily accessible to the trusted person or legal worker/attorney.)
- CONSIDER WHAT ID TO BRING: Carefully consider what identity documents you bring on your trip. Please contact firstname.lastname@example.org for technical assistance.
- CREATE A PHONE TREE that you can activate in the event that your vehicle is detained. There should be a designated “on call” member of the phone tree who is responsible for receiving calls from a designated member of the car if/when the vehicle is stopped. This “on call” member is then responsible for activating other members of the phone tree. Please contact email@example.com for technical assistance on how to create a phone tree.