Indy churches team up to form "Rapid Response Team" to help immigrants facing deportation

September 6, 2017 | RTV6 | Link to Article

INDIANAPOLIS -- Churches in Indianapolis have united to support a hotline to help people possibly facing deportation after President Trump ended the DACA immigration program earlier this week. 

They call themselves the “Rapid Response Team.”

“There is this inherent responsibility if we don’t look out for each other,” said Rapid Response Team member Johnathan Freeman. “Then who would look out for anybody?”

Without a warrant, immigrations officers can’t force a person who is in the United States illegally out of their home for an arrest. Undocumented immigrants have the right to an attorney and the right to remain silent, just like American citizens.

While the Rapid Response Team can’t stop legal immigration enforcement, they can serve as a witness to the process and a support group for family members who may be left behind.

“Once officials show up in their uniforms with guns on their hips it's very intimidating,” said Rapid Response Team member Scott Severens. “Having a place to call and people who care helps them. As we say: No one stands alone.”

The team is spread throughout Marion County and can be at 317-759-9474.

Team members expect to be busier in the days ahead as the fallout from Trump’s DACA ruling makes fewer exemptions involving immigration enforcement a reality.