Q&A With Jenn Budd

Southern Border Communities Coalition (SBCC) launched a new video series called “Breaking the Green Line” featuring Jenn Budd, a former Senior Border Patrol Agent and San Diego Sector Intelligence Officer. Budd left the Border Patrol after witnessing firsthand the corruption and abuse that has become a staple of Customs and Border Protection (CBP), and specifically Border Patrol, going back several decades. You were part of the U.S. Border Patrol from 1995 to 2001. Can you share why you joined in the first place and why you decided to leave? In December of 1993, I graduated with a Bachelor of Science in law from Auburn University. I had a fair amount of student loan debt and chose to push off law school and enter the workforce. The Border Patrol recruiter stated that I would be keeping drug smugglers and criminals from entering the country. He never mentioned that 98% or more of crossers were families simply looking for a better life. Up until that point, I had lived most of my life in Alabama and knew nothing about the southwest border or the countries and cultures that most people came from. After the first five years as an agent, I had come to understand that I was not protecting this country from criminals, but simply enforcing policies and laws that were more political in nature. I witnessed how these political policies were directly affecting people who lived on both sides of the border, how the agents were affected and how these policies directly caused the deaths of thousands of people whose only crime was trying to seek a better life for their families. In my sixth and final year, I planned to leave and was studying for law school when I was chosen to become a San Diego Sector Intelligence Officer. As such, I witnessed firsthand just how corrupt agents could be. I had always known how extensive the agency’s problem was with sexual harassment, that it was systemic and well rooted, but I now became aware that it was this way for corruption as well. I had enough, and I left without a job or law school lined up. On my exit interview, I stated I was leaving because “the agency and its management are immoral and corrupt.” Continue reading

Q&A with Johana Bencomo: SBCC’s New Co-Chair!

  “I’m a small-town girl!” laughs Johana Bencomo, Director of Community Organizing at New Mexico Comunidades en Acción y De Fé (NMCAFé), a faith-based organization located in Las Cruces, New Mexico. Though much of her life has been spent in small towns, Johana brings big goals and aspirations to her work within NMCAFé, and as the newly-appointed Co-chair of the Southern Border Communities Coalition (SBCC). Continue reading

SBCC Joins Over 200 Organizations Calling on Congress to End Trump’s “Zero-Tolerance” Immigration Policy

SBCC joined over 200 civil rights, racial justice, and faith-based organizing groups in signing a letter sent to Congressional leaders this week, calling on elected officials to end the Trump Administration’s “Zero-Tolerance” immigration policy. The letter states that the “Zero-Tolerance” immigration policy, created by Attorney General Jeff Sessions, has resulted in the mass persecutions of immigrants, family separation, and the transfer of children to detention centers or federal foster care programs. The letter calls on Congress to repeal the policies that make migration a crime, and to oppose anti-immigrant legislation that expands these laws that would make it easier to convict and incarcerate immigrants for longer periods of time. Continue reading

Tell Congress to Vote NO on Ryan's Border Militarization & Family Separation Bill

House Republicans will introduce a border militarization and family separation bill this week that would waste more than $20 billion on Trump’s vanity wall and hire thousands of unaccountable border agents, while holding Dreamers and children at the border hostage. Trump is ripping children from their parents in the southern border region as a negotiating tactic to get his vanity wall and hire thousands of unaccountable border agents that only serve to further separate and terrorize communities. Continue reading

Breaking Down the New SBCC Logo

by Erwin Mendoza Graphic Designer Starting this week, the Southern Border Communities Coalition (SBCC) will have a new and vibrant logo! It was time for us to refresh our visual identity to better reflect the work we do in the southern border region, which is to promote policies and solutions that improve the quality of life of border residents. Continue reading

🎬 Help Expose Border Patrol By Bringing This Documentary To Life! 📹

Andrea Guerrero, Co-Chair of the Southern Border Communities Coalition, recently sat down with the documentary film crew of “The Thin Green Line” to tell the real story of Border Patrol that the Trump administration doesn’t want you to see. “The Thin Green Line” is a critical examination of Border Patrol’s abusive practices and lack of oversight and accountability, and how living under the boot of Border Patrol has resulted in devastating losses for our communities, including the erosion of our rights and excessive use of force. Continue reading

Help push back against trading DACA for wall!

Second-ranking House Democratic leader Steny Hoyer said Tuesday that Democrats are willing to accept funding for President Trump’s harmful border wall in exchange for "Dreamer" protections. Young immigrants, particularly Border Dreamers, have repeatedly said they do not want to be used as bargaining chips to further militarize the southern border region. Border communities do not want or need more border militarization and Rep. Hoyer needs to know that this is unacceptable. Continue reading

Advocacy Organizations Ask Governors to Condemn Hate and Violence at the Border

Today, 45 civil rights, advocacy, and community organizations wrote to ask governors in all 50 states to reject President Trump’s plans to deploy the National Guard to the southern border by declining to send state troops. Noting the xenophobia and bigotry that are driving this action, the groups urged Governors to make a public statement condemning any vigilante violence at or near the border. Continue reading

No Bricks for this Harmful Wall!

Foolhardy. That’s how the vast majority of Americans feel about a border wall. And with good reason. Continue reading

350 Organizations Ask Congress to Protect Dreamers and #DefundHate

On March 7, 2018, more than 350 organizations national, state, and local organizations released a letter urging Congress to provide permanent protections for Dreamers and reduce funding for immigration enforcement, border enforcement, and detention in the FY18 Department of Homeland Security and Department of Justice appropriations bills. Together, the signers represent 39 states and the District of Columbia.  Continue reading

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