WASHINGTON – In response to Immigration and Customs Enforcement’s mass raid in Mississippi on Wednesday, Rabbi Jonah Dov Pesner, Director of the Religious Action Center of Reform Judaism, issued the following statement on behalf of the Union for Reform Judaism, the Central Conference of American Rabbis, and the wider Reform Movement:
“Yesterday, what we long feared finally came to pass: a mass immigration raid in Mississippi has led to the detention and possible deportation of nearly 700 immigrants by Immigration and Customs Enforcement. This action highlights the cruelty and inhumanity of the federal government’s immigration policies. Raids like these target peaceful members of our communities and separate families. In addition to fracturing the Jackson-area community, these raids terrorized immigrants across the United States just days after the massacre in El Paso, which were fueled by white supremacist ideology and traumatized the immigrant community.
“These raids, the largest in at least a decade, make clear why an end to the detention and deportation of immigrants in the United States and the elimination of funding that ICE and Customs and Border Protection use for these activities is so vital.
“Our most sacred Jewish texts command us again and again to care for and love the immigrant. In coalition with immigrant-led organizations, the Reform Movement will continue to mobilize for just and compassionate immigration policies and to take action to oppose deportation raids including public opposition, providing physical sanctuary in synagogues and legislative efforts to fix our broken and inhumane immigration system.”
The Religious Action Center of Reform Judaism is the Washington office of the Union for Reform Judaism, whose more than 900 congregations across North America encompass 1.5 million Reform Jews, and the Central Conference of American Rabbis, whose membership includes more than 2,000 Reform rabbis. Visit www.rac.org for more.