In El Paso, TX, a victim of domestic violence was seeking an order of protection from her abusive boyfriend when she was arrested in court by Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) officers, acting on a tip regarding her whereabouts. The North Carolina Coalition Against Domestic Violence (NCCADV) warns that the implications could be deadly for victims of domestic violence who are undocumented and fear reporting abuse.
“The increased and aggressive actions of ICE officers in El Paso will further silence and harm victims of intimate partner violence,” said Dana Mangum, NCCADV Executive Director.
Perpetrators of intimate partner violence often use victims’ undocumented immigration status as a tactic of abuse – threatening to report them to ICE and have them deported, separating them from their citizen children.
“This incident in El Paso makes our communities less safe because victims fearing deportation will not go for the help that they desperately need,” said Mangum.
NCCADV joins allies across the country in calling on the federal government to swiftly condemn ICE’s action in this case. Without swift condemnation from the Administration, this case may set a dangerous precedent and further silence and marginalize victims of violence. NCCADV urges the federal government and Congressional leaders to demonstrate their support for survivors of violence by keeping the pathway to safety unimpeded for all survivors.