Tina Vasquez is the immigration reporter at Rewire.News, a journalism nonprofit that specializes in reporting on reproductive rights and social justice issues. Formerly, she was an associate editor at Black Girl Dangerous and has contributed to The Guardian, Jezebel, Bitch Magazine, and Al Jazeera. (May 2018)

Follow Tina Vasquez on Twitter: @TheTinaVasquez ‏.


Abolish ICE: Beyond a Slogan

Protesters from an immigrant rights group marching to protest the Secure Communities program, Los Angeles, California, August 2011

There were nationwide demonstrations in June, and placards calling to “Abolish ICE” were ubiquitous. The movement to abolish ICE has repeatedly been dismissed as little more than the left’s “new rallying cry,” accompanied by the accusation that the slogan lacks “a real plan.” But there are existing and emerging models for what it looks like to chip away at ICE and put something else in its place: there can be a community-based alternative to a violent immigration system.

The New ICE Age: An Agency Unleashed

President Trump holding a White House roundtable on sanctuary cities with Homeland Security Secretary Kirstjen Nielsen and ICE’s acting director, Thomas Homan, in Washington, D.C., March 20, 2018

Newly empowered, ICE is newly emboldened. Despite the many failings of Trump’s White House, the administration has delivered on one of the president’s primary goals: mass deportations. Trump is giving ICE the tools, financial resources, and presidential backing to go after immigrant communities as never before. While John Kelly and Stephen Miller may be the main architects of Trump’s nativist anti-immigration policy, they are not its most important and powerful supporters. For that, look to the labor union that represents ICE’s agents.