Like many of the over 11 million undocumented immigrants living in the United States, 27-year-old developer Celso Mireles spent much of his life haunted by the specter of surprise deportations of the kind that we saw across the country this week. Although he’s recently documented, Mireles came to the country as a child with two undocumented parents and then spent over 25 years undocumented while seeing friends and community members deported.
By Patrick Howell O’Neill | MOTHERBOARD
Now Mireles is building a new app aiming to provide crowdsourced and verified warnings about immigration raids so undocumented individuals can be alerted and avoid them. News of the app comes in the wake of new Homeland Security immigration raids totalling more than 680 arrests. The app has been in the works since the Obama administration was busy deporting more people than any president in history, but the recent raids motivated its developer to pick it up again.
The open source project, known as redadalertas (Raid Alerts), needs to solve a range issues if it wants to do more good than harm, but it’s also gaining a lot of support. New volunteers have come in from GitHub and email lists to build an active resistance to Trump’s anti-immigrant actions.
„The process is to crowdsource information [on raids] and verify it,“ Mireles said. „If someone reports a raid, there has to be multiple verifications. Organizers from the immigrant community want to defend against trolls. Then the system will know and send a message to everyone in 10 to 20 mile radius.“