Fearful immigrants in Green Bay

Local News

President Trump’s travel ban impacting immigrants and refugees has left many within that community in Northeast Wisconsin fearful.  Local 5’s Kris Schuller reports an area police department is doing all it can to let them know they are safe.

As the general manager of Las Mas Grande radio station in Green Bay, Gabriela Gamboa is in touch with the concerns of the Latino community.  And she says right now President Trump’s travel ban has many upset.

“We’re scared. I’m scared. I’m nervous and I don’t want to take the risk,” said Gamboa.

Gamboa says many are worried that even with valid visas, if they left the country they wouldn’t be allowed back in.

“I’ve heard about people who have already planned something, vacation, visiting family – but they stop everything. Why because they are nervous,” said Gamboa.

And many immigrants are again feeling under attack – fearful of possible deportation.

“People see the travel ban, they see the stories on TV about people not able to get back in the country and they are concerned,” said Green Bay Police Chief Andrew Smith. “About themselves and their family members as well.”

Ever since Donald Trump took office, Chief Smith says he has been reaching out to the immigrant community – assuring them immigration enforcement is the role of the federal government and not his officers.

“Municipal law enforcement is not concerned with someone’s immigration status in our day to day work,” Chief Smith said.

A pledge he plans to keep so immigrants can feel safe to contact his department to report any problem.

“We’re here to keep everybody in Green Bay safe regardless of their immigration status and I need to make sure they get that message,” said Smith.

“The chief has been very open with us, likes to get together with us in the community and talk about what’s going on,” Gamboa said.

A conversation that will likely be ongoing as the White House works through it’s immigration policies.

Chief Smith is also a member the Law Enforcement Immigration Task Force,  a national undertaking looking at U.S. immigration policy. Police chiefs from Appleton and Oshkosh are also on the task force.

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