Ithaca residents have called an “emergency rally” on Wednesday afternoon in the wake of a Tuesday arrest of an Ithaca man by Immigration and Customs Enforcement officers.
Rally organizers Carolina Osorio Gil and Fabina Colon urge attendees to maintain the confidentiality of the man who was arrested on Tuesday. “Given our desire for justice we may be tempted to ‘Say His Name’ but we urge you to please consider his family who may still be very vulnerable,” they said in describing the rally on Facebook on Tuesday.
According to media reports, federal officials arrested a Mexican national on Tuesday on Ithaca’s northside, near the intersection of Cascadilla and Fourth Streets.
The City of Ithaca, Tompkins County, and Cornell University have all taken steps to suggest or say outright that they would not pursue people based on immigration status, and would not seek information about immigration status that wasn’t relevant to an investigation. But that doesn’t mean federal agents can’t come to Ithaca to arrest people they believe are in violation of immigration laws. That leaves some residents worried about their friends and neighbors, or looking over their own shoulders.
“Reach out to any neighbors or family members that are feeling afraid,” Mayor Myrick said on his Facebook page. “Make sure they know how to reach you if they need to.”
“Call your Congressman,” the mayor adds. “Tell them how it makes you feel to know unmarked federal officers are grabbing people off of your sidewalk.”
Rally organizers ask attendees to “come prepared to act peacefully” and “center our movement on solidarity, justice and self-empowerment.”
“We are also expecting that people from the opposition will be present at this rally and want to remind everyone that this is a non-violent rally,” say organizers. They add that I.C.E. itself can monitor events like this, “so please let that inform your decision to attend.”
The rally is from 5-6pm on Wednesday May 3 at the Bernie Milton Pavilion on the Ithaca Commons in Downtown Ithaca.