After years of organizing led by immigrant women from groups like Juntos, and less than a month after Occupy ICE activists had set up their tents—they had won this particular battle. “We now serve as a real beacon of light to other cities across the country who may be asking themselves, ‘What more can I do to protect families who are being torn apart?’” Almiron said in a statement.

“When I say abolish ICE, what I’m really getting to is abolishing all of these quote unquote law enforcement groups—police that have been separating families for as long as we’ve had police,” said Dolores Garcia, a 25-year-old organizer of the Philadelphia Occupy ICE protest and a member of Philly Socialists. “It’s also about abolishing stop and frisk. It’s about holding our politicians accountable for the things they ran on and got elected off of. It’s not just about this one department.”

Given the impossibility of abolishing the agency through legislation in the near-term, this is a version of what abolish ICE can look like in practice. The collaboration that occurs between the agency and city and state governments can be made harder to carry out, and the operations it aims to conduct in secret can be made public. If ICE can’t be dismantled in the immediate future, the machinery of deportation can be slowed by people working collaboratively to jam up its gears.

And the work extends beyond the agency itself. According to Ruiz of the New Sanctuary Coalition, there is a need to dismantle and defund the agency, but more critically in the short-term, he believes that local elected officials need to examine practices like “broken windows” policing that often put undocumented immigrants on ICE’s radar. “We need to be pushing local efforts,” he said. “There is a rhetoric of New York being friendly to immigrants, but you scratch the surface of that rhetoric and it bleeds. It bleeds with the names of people that have disappeared from our communities.”

In Philadelphia, the end of the city’s PARS agreement with ICE is one step towards abolishing the infrastructure that enables the agency to operate with impunity, even as increased police presence and efforts to shut them down leaves the future of the encampment unclear. “I am excited by the moment, even though things are very hard in the community,” Almiron said. “It doesn’t feel as isolating anymore, [because now] people see what we see. I’m glad that abolish ICE has gained so much traction. I hope it keeps growing. And I think we should be having local conversations about what it means for our local policies.”

She added: “Those are the wins we need in this moment.”