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Four Poultry Plant Executives Indicted After ICE Raid

The indictments come a year after 680 people were arrested at two Mississippi plants in one of the largest workplace ICE raids in history

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Four executives from two Mississippi poultry processing plants have been indicted after one of the largest workplace immigration raids in the U.S. in the past decade. U.S. Attorney Mike Hurst and acting ICE director Matthew Albence announced the indictments Thursday. The announcement happened a day before the one-year anniversary of the raids, where 680 people were arrested, but not those four executives. Hurst said those indicted worked as managers, supervisors or human resources employees. Associated Press

In other national immigration news…

Use of Force Incidents in Detention Surge During Pandemic

BuzzFeed News has found there has been a substantial increase in uses of force against detained immigrants since the beginning of the coronavirus pandemic. Since the end of March through the beginning of July, guards at detention centers have deployed force in incidents involving more than 10 immigrants at a time on a dozen occasions. Overall, more than 600 detainees have been subjected to these uses of force. according to reports obtained by BuzzFeed News. In comparison, from September 2019 to March there were two use-of-force incidents against more than 10 detainees. BuzzFeed News

Border Crossings Rise Despite Pandemic

The number of migrants apprehended at the U.S.–Mexico border rose 24% in July, according to U.S. Customs and Border Protection figures released on Thursday. Despite the pandemic generally slowing movement around the world, it was the third month in a row that unauthorized border crossings had increased. Overall, 40,746 immigrants are detained in the U.S., far less than the peak figures of over 100,000 last year, but more than double April’s figures. The majority of border crossers were Mexican men, as Central Americans struggle to cross closed borders. Emergency orders put in place during the pandemic have allowed CBP to quickly deport people after they cross. The Washington Post

Guatemalan Shelters Stretched with Deported Children

Hundreds of children deported to Guatemala are returning to shelters that are poorly equipped to handle the pandemic. As the U.S.’s pandemic rules allow the immediate deportation of anyone crossing the border, local officials have seen surging numbers of deported children who can’t return home due to gang violence or domestic abuse. Child protection services were already overstretched before the pandemic and have been further compromised by COVID-19. Some children also face discrimination over fears they have caught coronavirus while in the U.S. At one shelter, administrative staff were caring for 36 boys and girls after childcare staff walked out when some children tested positive for COVID-19. Reuters

Guest Workers Catching COVID-19

A total of 198 of 215 residents in a farmworker dormitory in Oxnard, California, tested positive for the coronavirus in early July. A hundred miles north in Santa Maria, at least 85 people were infected at group housing facilities. Farmworkers across the country, who are largely immigrants on guest worker visas, are catching COVID-19 as they’re forced to work through the pandemic and live in close housing conditions. Reyna Alvarez in Crowley, Louisiana, was fired after she returned from the hospital to her job at a crawfish processing plant. Her employer reported her to ICE. “We were like living dead, like zombies in the plant,” Alvarez said. Bloomberg

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