New Jersey residents push back against President Trump’s immigration raids

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METUCHEN -

Raids on illegal immigrants are expected to take place in 10 cities across the country Sunday, as promised by President Donald Trump.

Some New Jersey residents and advocates for undocumented immigrants are pushing back against the practice.

A group opposing the raids gathered in Metuchen Friday afternoon. They say that they do not like the way that undocumented children are being treated in detention camps in Texas. They also say that they do not like the idea of Immigration and Customs Enforcement agents coming into their town and arresting their neighbors.

“It doesn’t feel like security. It feels like an act of vengeance. It feels like payback,” says Metuchen resident Luciana Mallozzi.

Trump has spoken about these raids recently as some Democratic members of Congress criticized his detention camps.

RELATED: Trump says nationwide immigration arrests to begin Sunday 

"It starts on Sunday and they're going to take people out and they're going to bring them back to their countries,” the president said. “Or they're going to take criminals out, put them in prison or put them in prison in the countries they came from."

At Friday’s rally, Mallozzi was holding sketches that she drew of six children who died while in a detention center along the border.

"These are somebody's children. We took them and they died,” she says.

Metuchen Mayor Jonathan Busch says that he believes this to be a human rights issue.

"Detaining children, no matter where born, in grim, filthy, crowded, windowless concrete facilities without parents is heartbreaking,” he says.

The mayor recalls a New Jersey father arrested by ICE agents last year while he was taking his children to school. The community rallied and after 10 months in a detention center, that man was released.

Community members say that they fear that this could happen again. Some of New Jersey’s representatives in Washington says that they agree.

"This fear-based culture is a toxic thing that he's doing,” says Sen. Cory Booker. “It may help him gin-up parts of his base, but it's undermining the fabric of our country."

It was unclear if any of these raids will target New Jersey. Gov. Phil Murphy has said that he is against these raids and says that he vows to protect undocumented immigrants in New Jersey when possible.

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