Farmworkers Arrested by Border Patrol After 13-Mile Dairy March

Two dairy farmworkers were heading back to a Franklin Country farm where they live and work after participating in a 13-mile march from Montpelier to the Ben & Jerry’s Factory in Waterbury. That’s when U.S. Border Patrol agents detained them on Saturday night.

Immigrant dairy farmworkers and activists Yesenia Hernández-Ramos and Esau Peche-Ventura, 19 and 26, continue to be detained, and the immigrant justice group they’re involved with, Migrant Justice, is planning a rally outside of the Chittenden Regional Correctional Facility where Hernández-Ramos is detained. Both are in U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement custody.

Migrant Justice organizer Will Lambek told necn, “We denounce this unacceptable arrest of two members of our community. Yesenia and Esau had just marched 13 miles under the hot sun to demand that their dignity as workers and human beings be recognized. We call for their immediate release and an end to Trump's raids and deportations." According to Lambek, both activists are being held without access to attorneys, with one attorney trying to visit Hernández-Ramos on Sunday. Charges are unknown, and Migrant Justice did no comment on immigration status.

Hernández-Ramos and Peche-Ventura were marching with the Milk with Dignity campaign, a program run by dairy workers and activists to improve conditions in the dairy industry.

Multiple organizers from the group have been arrested during the past year, including Victor Diaz, Miguel Alcudia, Enrique Balcazar, and Zully Palacios. They have been released after public pressure was applied by Vermont politicians and immigrant activist rallies.

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