BERKELEY (KPIX 5) – The threat of another round of ICE raids set to begin Sunday has put some people in the Bay Area on edge.

Saturday afternoon hundreds of people rallied at Berkeley’s Civic Center Park just beyond the steps of City Hall, where the mayor condemned the raids and reaffirmed Berkeley’s status as a sanctuary city.

“If ICE comes into our community, we will show up in the streets, we will protest, we will fight for the rights of our immigrant brothers and sisters here in our community,” said Mayor Jesse Arreguín.

Saturday’s rally was originally to protest the conditions at detention facilities, but the city-sponsored event took on even more meaning with the Trump administration’s announcement of Sunday’s ICE raids.

“It’s important that we come together as a community, and that we not only tell our undocumented community that we are here to stand with them, but also that we are here to stand up and speak out for the basic human rights of all people,” says Mayor Arreguín.

Amid the music and songs, speakers shared their own immigration stories, including City Auditor Jenny Wong.

“That could have been me. We could have been rounded up and placed in detention centers,” said Wong.

Wong said she, her parents and her two sisters came to the United States from Taiwan when she was 6 years old. Her family became U.S. citizens in 1986.

“That’s what I experienced as a child – is a government that really showed compassion for immigrants and now we don’t have that compassion,” said Wong.

Those attending Saturday’s rally say they understand how the threats of deportation and detention impact the undocumented community.

“As a teacher, I’ve worked with so many immigrant families and I see the struggle and the fear over the years, and so this really hit close to home,” said Regina Santa Cruz.

“They’re trying to work with the people and trying to make sure that everyone is comfortable and isn’t discriminated against. It’s just the whole Berkeley philosophy,” says Berkeley resident Jack Laws.

Mayor Arreguín said he is not aware of any ICE activity happening in the city on Sunday, but has already instructed all city offices, including the police department, not to assist with immigration enforcement actions.

Comments (2)
  1. These raids happened for years under Obama said Jeh Johnson formerly DHS secretary under Obama. The outrage by democrats is nothing but selective outrage because its President Trump. The current migration at our border is costing taxpayers a Kings ransom ($17,000 per day ABC news.) Fleeing persecution? or fleeing for freebies? they sure don’t stay in Mexico when they reach “safety” or ask or offered political asylum in Mexico. Why? because Mexico will give them NOTHING. So they make the long journey to our border, our generous Democrats, and our tax dollars.

    We have Democrat / Socialist / Activists in the Northern Triangle of South America & Mexico; even as you read this instructing the populations to make sure you bring your children and use the the magic words…..”credible fear.” Mexico recently arrested two socialist activists who were instrumental in the organizing of prior caravans, Then you have a Democrat House saying the crisis is “manufactured” as literally thousands attack our border daily? The crisis IS manufactured…by the Democrats themselves. Make no mistake about this, Democrats want this to happen and never stop. They will with hold border security support allowing as many illegal aliens to enter the country as possible overwhelming our BP & ICE before assisting in border security (if ever.)

    To Democrats/Socialists programs like Temporary Protective Status (TPS) or Deferred Action for Childhood arrivals (DACA) are permanent programs. There is nothing “temporary or deferred” about these programs to Democrats. These programs are designed to admit refugees (usually from the third world) then Democrats fight to keep them here permanently using the charge of racism, religion, guilt, against anyone opposed. Simple formula works great.