Defending and Advancing Civil Rights throughout the Borderlands
The ACLU of New Mexico Regional Center for Border Rights, located in Las Cruces, represents ACLU of New Mexico in the southern region of the state and works in conjunction with ACLU state affiliates and immigrant rights advocates to address civil and human rights violations that stem from border-related immigration policies.
The RCBR plays a unique role in the ACLU organization in that it supports the work of distinct ACLU border affiliates in collaboration with national ACLU legal projects—such as the Immigrant Rights Project, the Racial Justice Program, and the Human Rights Program—and the ACLU Washington Legislative Office. Through this work, the center aims to ensure that the human rights of people living in border communities are represented in immigration reform and in border enforcement policies.
In addition, the Center provides outreach and public education services to the immigrant communities of Las Cruces and southern New Mexico, as well as to the general public, about issues affecting the immigrant population and on general civil rights matters. Through “Know Your Rights” presentations and materials, we inform immigrant groups about their civil and constitutional rights.
We also provide education and information to the general public to promote understanding of constitutional rights that extend to all who reside within the United States, regardless of their immigration status, including the right to free speech, the right to remain silent, and freedom from arbitrary detention and unreasonable search and seizure. We seek to protect and safeguard those rights by investigating reports of general civil rights abuses and seek the best means of redress or resolution.
The RCBR does not provide direct services to people seeking legal status in the United States. Please visit our page with immigration resources, where you can find important documents regarding immigrants’ rights as well as a list of organizations that may be able to assist with immigration cases.
- Public Education – RCBR staff regularly speak at community gatherings, meetings and in the press to raise awareness and increase public understanding of immigration issues and how they affect the nearly 12 million undocumented people living in the United States. If you would like to arrange a speaker or schedule and interview with a RCBR staff member, please submit a request and we will contact you shortly.
- “Know Your Rights” Trainings – In an effort to connect with rural communities in southern New Mexico, the RCBR conducts many “Know Your Rights” presentations throughout the year. Each presentation provides the tools that community members need to defend their civil rights when encountering law enforcement and to develop a family safety plan in the event of arrest, detention or deportation. If you would like to schedule a “Know Your Rights” training in your community, please submit a request and we will contact you to coordinate the details of the training.
- Policy Advocacy – The RCBR advocates for meaningful immigration and border policy reform locally in New Mexico, regionally throughout the southwestern states and nationally in Washington D.C. To learn more, you can read the ACLU-NM Policy on Immigration and Civil Liberties (PDF).
- Documentation and Investigation of Civil Rights Violations – The RCBR records and tracks civil rights abuses along the border for needs assessments, advocacy and accountability purposes. The RCBR has created the first online, bi-national abuse documentation database in collaboration with immigrant advocacy groups on both sides of the U.S.-Mexico border. The system provides consistent data for trends analysis, enabling the ACLU and coalition partners to track the location and severity of rights violations and leverage the data to effect policy change.
Key Areas of Concern
- Racial Profiling and Racial Justice
- Anti-Immigrant Laws and Ordinances
- Over-intensification of Border Resources
- Civil Rights Violations by Authorities
- Local Police Enforcing Federal Immigration Law
Regional Center for Border Rights
1300 El Paseo, Suite G
Las Cruces, NM 88001
Tel: (575) 527-0664
Fax: (575) 527-0111
Email: [email protected]