If you and your parents are in the United States illegally, you need to be concerned about potential ICE raids. You might think that immigration agents are only interested in detaining adults, but that's not necessarily the truth. Children and teenagers are at risk for detention, as well. Here are four tips that will help you protect yourself from an immigration raid.
Stay Inside Your Home
If you're at home when immigration officials arrive, don't answer the door. Immigration officials will knock, and attempt to gain access, but that doesn't mean you have to open the door to them. As soon as you open the door, agents can enter your home and detain you. If you're home alone, quietly move to the back of the house and wait for the immigration agents to leave. If your family is at home, have them remain quiet, as well. Agents may continue to visit your home, but you'll want to keep the doors shut.
Have a Contact Person
If you and your parents are at risk for detention due to your immigration status, you need to choose a contact person. This should be someone that will be there to help you should the need arise. In most cases, you'd want to contact your parents in an emergency. However, in the case of immigration issues, you'll want to contact someone with legal standing in the United States. Contacting your parents could put them at risk for detention, as well.
Know the Warning Signs
You're worried that immigration agents might detain you while at work or at school, it's important that you know the warning signs. Warning signs can help you avoid areas that might put you at risk for a raid. First, watch for an increase in police activity around warehouses or other areas with high concentrations of immigrants. Second, watch for signs that other immigrant families are being detained. Finally, pay attention to the news in your area. If you see any signs that would indicate an increase in immigration raids, try to avoid areas where you might be detained.
Contact an Attorney
If you do get caught in an immigration raid while you're away from your parents, contact an immigration attorney as soon as you can. Don't talk to any immigration agents until you've made contact with an attorney. They may try to coerce you into speaking, but it's important for you to remember that you have the right to an attorney who will fight for your immigration status.