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Should tech companies build tools for US immigration enforcement agencies?

Erika Andiola and Jonathan Ryan of the immigrant rights nonprofit RAICES will discuss this question and more at Code Conference on Tuesday.

Dream Act Activists Hold News Conference Urging Congress To Take Up Immigration Reform
Erika Andiola speaks at a press conference held by the Dream Action Coalition on immigration reform December 4, 2013 in Washington, DC. 
Photo by Win McNamee/Getty Images
Shirin Ghaffary is a senior Vox correspondent covering the social media industry. Previously, Ghaffary worked at BuzzFeed News, the San Francisco Chronicle, and TechCrunch.

RAICES, or the Refugee and Immigrant Center for Education and Legal Services, is a Texas-based nonprofit that’s been providing free legal aid to immigrants for decades. But you probably only heard about the organization when last year it made history for being the recipient of the largest-grossing crowdfunding campaign in Facebook’s history.

In light of the Trump administration’s “zero tolerance” immigration policy, two former Facebook employees set up a campaign that raised more than $20 million to help RAICES provide legal aid and services to families separated at the border.

Recode’s cofounder and editor at large Kara Swisher and Vox’s founder and editor-at-large Ezra Klein will interview the organization’s chief advocacy officer, Erika Andiola, and its CEO, Jonathan Ryan at Code Conference on Tuesday.

Andiola got her start in community organizing when she co-founded the Arizona Dream Act Coalition. As an undocumented woman and DACA recipient herself, she’s dedicated her career to fighting for immigrant rights. Previously, Andiola worked on Senator Bernie Sanders’ 2016 presidential campaign as a Latino outreach strategist.

Ryan is an Irish-American attorney and human rights advocate who’s led RAICES since 2008. In his time at the nonprofit, he’s grown it from only four employees to over 200.

Under his leadership, the organization has taken a stand on critical issues tied to the “Tech Won’t Build It” movement, such as refusing a $250,000 donation from Salesforce after it was revealed that the company holds a contract with Customs and Border Protection, a federal agency that’s been involved in enforcing Trump’s controversial family separation policy. (Salesforce has maintained that their software is not used by CBP to enable that policy.)

We plan to ask Andiola and Ryan about the current state of immigration policy, how it impacts the tech industry, and about the debate over whether technology companies should provide tools to immigration enforcement agencies. The interview will be at 10:10 a.m. PT on Tuesday, June 11.

To learn more about the relationship between immigration and tech, listen to Kara Swisher’s Recode Decode podcast with the organizers of the record-setting crowdfunding campaign for RAICES, read our coverage of Salesforce’s controversial role providing technology to Customs and Border Protection, and check out our comprehensive look at the “smart wall” of drone technology at the US border.

How to watch the full interview: Each and every onstage interview at Code will be available to watch in full on Recode’s YouTube channel in the coming days.

You can also get live updates and breaking news from the stage. Follow Recode on Twitter so you don’t miss a beat. We’ll be live-tweeting our onstage interview with Andiola and Ryan using #CodeCon. We’ll also feature some exclusive behind-the-scenes highlights from the conference on Instagram.

Recode and Vox have joined forces to uncover and explain how our digital world is changing — and changing us. Subscribe to Recode podcasts to hear Kara Swisher and Peter Kafka lead the tough conversations the technology industry needs today.