Damon Seils, Carrboro Board of Aldermen member, emphasized the importance of allowing immigrant populations to feel safe in the local community.
"I know it's been a difficult week for many of you and for the community,” Seils said. “Carrboro and Orange County should be safe places for everyone in this room."
Michael Parker, member of the Chapel Hill Town Council, echoed the sentiments of the Carrboro Aldermen.
"The town of Chapel Hill welcomes you, supports you and wants to protect you in any way we can,” Parker said.
Attorney Beckie Moriello of the National Immigration Project presented some common scenarios that involve immigration enforcement and how undocumented individuals can communicate with them within their rights.
"It's easy to see someone in a uniform that appears to have authority and think that you're required to answer questions,” she said. “And that's not always the case."
ICE has reportedly deceptively showed photos of unidentified Latinx individuals to Latinx community members. ICE will use this as an excuse to enter local residents' homes, ask for their identification and take undocumented residents into custody.
The ICE office for the region that Orange County falls into is located in Atlanta. The 25 undocumented individuals have been sent to the Atlanta office and are being detained there, officials said at the meeting.
Orange County Sheriff Charles Blackwood spoke about building a trusting relationship between the immigrant community and law enforcement in order to make the community safer.
"Trust is a hard thing to gain and an easy thing to lose,” Blackwood said. “We're willing to do the work to gain your trust if you're willing to give it to us."
Blackwood emphasized that local law enforcement does not share information with ICE authorities and is not involved with immigration enforcement.
N.C. Rep. Graig Meyer, D-Orange, spoke to the scope of the impact ICE detainments have on the local communities.
"For many years I worked for the Chapel Hill schools and worked with many of you families,” Meyer said. “And this week I'm very sad because two of my students had their father picked up and taken away."