PALO ALTO (CBS SF) — Palantir offices in Palo Alto were once again blocked off by protesters Friday calling for an end to the company’s data technology contracts with U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement.
Hundreds of people gathered at .CloseTheCamps protests across the country in July, including about 300 people at Palantir’s headquarters. About 50 people returned the company Friday to continue their push for Palantir to cut its ties with ICE, which has drawn scrutiny for child separation, overcrowding, and deaths at immigration detention camps at the U.S.-Mexico border.
“Palantir is automating white supremacy. They are automating ethnic cleansing. They’re setting up a gauntlet … to capture and pull out and extract the people they don’t want to be here,” said Tracey Rosenberg of the Oakland Privacy anti-surveillance coalition.
Immigrant advocacy groups and media organizations obtained documents in April showing that Palantir created “Investigative Case Management” software for ICE to organize and track information from multiple government agencies.
This software allows ICE to run background checks on parents trying to claim detained children, prosecute and arrest individuals, and compile data on home addresses, workplaces and social media, according to a 46-page report on Palantir released last week by advocacy group Mijente, which called the company the “tech backbone” of ICE.
Gathered outside the company’s cafeteria at 542 High St. on Friday, protesters chanted, “Get out of our town!” and “Hey, hey, ho ho!
Palantir has got to go!” They said Palantir is complicit in large workplace raids made possible through its technology, including one that resulted in the arrest of 680 undocumented immigrants at poultry plants in Mississippi last week. It was estimated to be the largest workplace raid in the state’s history.
Palantir co-founder Peter Thiel has denied the extent of its involvement with ICE in the past. The company could not immediately be reached for comment.
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