Immigrants, Black people, and communities of color in Texas have faced decades of criminalization, incarceration, and deep entanglement between local law enforcement agencies and federal immigration enforcement authorities - leading to high numbers of immigration arrests, deportations, and incarcerations.
Texas is also home to one of the nation’s most regressive anti-immigrant laws, SB 4, which fortifies ICE’s ability to use local jails to target, arrest, and deport immigrants. As an epicenter for criminalization and immigration enforcement, we know that policies in Texas will impact other locations facing similar challenges.
Our strategy to challenge the anti-immigrant and mass incarceration agenda in Texas is to pass and implement local policies that disrupt the arrest-to-deportation pipeline by reducing arrests, incarceration, and deportations. We advocate for local policies that promote immigrant rights and criminal justice, and we provide a wide range of campaign, legal/policy, and communications support to local groups and coalitions fighting for inclusive justice. By increasing understanding of how the criminal and immigrations systems intersect, nurturing effective coalitions, winning policy change, developing resources, shifting the narrative, building legal capacity, and fostering cohesion among advocates across the state, we seek to build a strong movement for long-terms wins at the local level and strengthen legal representation for immigrants in Texas.
The ILRC’s work in Texas focuses on building capacity and passing and implementing local policies that dismantle the arrest-to-deportation pipeline and decriminalize immigrants, Black people, and other communities of color.