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JENNIFER ALLEN Printer Friendly Page
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  • Open Borders advocate
  • Says that illegal aliens “have civil rights and human rights that take precedence over defending the country.”

Jennifer Allen is co-director of the Border Action Network (BAN), an Arizona-based organization that seeks “to ensure that those who are most impacted [i.e., illegal aliens] by border and immigration policies are at the forefront of movements calling for human dignity and civil rights.”

In December 2002, Allen, complaining of abuses that anti-illegal immigration activists had allegedly carried out against unlawful border-crossers, stated that “undocumented” individuals “have civil rights and human rights that take precedence over defending the country.”

Professing BAN’s determination to “challenge the growth of the anti-immigrant movement in southern Arizona,” Allen in December 2003 announced that her organization would soon be filing a lawsuit to "represent the undocumented immigrants who were detained" by a vigilante group trying to protect the U.S. border. Such groups, she said "have created an atmosphere of fear and intimidation for both migrants and community members along the Arizona/Mexico border.... [W]e are witnessing outrageous … violations … [of] the civil rights of the undocumented."

In June 2005 Allen announced that BAN would be filing yet another lawsuit, this time against the Arizona State Land Department (ASLD), which was in charge of administering (i.e., selling or leasing) the state’s nine million acres of trust lands. At issue was ASLD’s decision to renew, for a period of ten years, its then-expiring lease of 14,000 acres of state grazing lands to a Cochise County, Arizona resident named Roger Barnett. An outspoken opponent of illegal immigration, Barnett was accused by Allen and BAN of having violated the terms of his existing lease contract by engaging in "racially motivated violence" and threats against illegal border crossers. Said Allen:

“We’ve been like a broken record for the last three years ... calling for public officials to put an end to the hysteria and violence created by border vigilantes. And how do they respond? Well, the State Land Department’s decision to renew Mr. Barnett’s lease is a classic example of officials’ attempts to sweep the issue under the rug…. It’s shameful that our public officials ... do not have the political will to uphold the law and put an end to vigilantes. It took the U.S. Congress forty years to proclaim lynching unlawful. It’s abhorrent that officials are reluctant to act on something so obvious, but we’re willing to keep the fight up for another forty years if that what it takes.”

In December 2007, Allen announced that BAN had produced a new report accusing Arizona police of committing "possible human rights violations" against illegal immigrants. The alleged offenses included "illegal temporary detention," "violation of the rights of due process," "illegal stopping for violation of immigration laws," and "psychological or verbal abuse."



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