Round-up: Immigration and Enforcement Systems Under Fire Amidst Record-Number Deportations

On the heels of the Obama administration’s announcement of its latest record-high number of deportations, two television documentaries and a study revealed persistent problems with the nation’s immigration detention and enforcement systems. Meanwhile, Santa Clara passed new guidelines for civil immigration detainers and a Washington D.C. Mayor signed an executive order Wednesday that would prohibit local police from inquiring about... Read More

New Interactive Timeline Tracks Growing Resistance to Secure Communities

Obama’s flagship immigration enforcement program faced criticism from coast to coast on Tuesday.  First The New York Times ran an editorial titled “Resistance Grows” that supported Massachusetts for joining Illinois and New York in rejecting Secure Communities. “We welcome the votes of no-confidence in Secure Communities,” read the NYT op-ed. “The message is clear and growing louder: Mr. Obama and the homeland... Read More

Enforcement Desk Round-up: States Push Back Against Secure Communities, More Bills Challenge Sanctuary Cities

Backlash against President Obama’s flagship immigration enforcement program, Secure Communities, has picked up momentum in recent weeks, and sparked new debate on how far the federal government will go to implement the program nationwide with disregard to opposition at the state and local level. Illinois: DHS overrules Illinois’ decision to terminate the program in the state On May 4, Illinois Governor Pat Quinn informed the Immigration... Read More

New Resources on Secure Communities from ICE, ACLU

Sometimes you want to go right to the source. That’s why Deportation Nation offers a Library of primary documents. We’ve just added several recent reports on Secure Communities by non-profits and ICE. You can read the documents online, add your comments and highlight them. In the section on “ICE Data, Reports & Audits” we added a March 2011 Memo from ICE Director John Morton on Civil Immigration Enforcement in which he... Read More

Docs Show ICE Had a Different Definition of “Voluntary” for Secure Communities (Audio)

Many of the documents were heavily redacted. The Immigration and Customs Enforcement Agency (ICE) recently released 15,000 pages of internal documents about whether participation in Secure Communities is mandatory. To learn about the details they reveal, Deportation Nation interviewed Sarahi Uribe of the National Day Laborer Organizing Network. She is a plaintiff in the FOIA lawsuit that led to the release of the documents. “We now see that... Read More

Confusion Helped Spread of Secure Communities, Even As Resistance Remains Strong

Many of the released ICE documents were heavily redacted. Newly released records reveal how federal authorities kept altering their stance on whether local police are required to share arrest data with immigration agents, even if they ask not to. “Keeping you in the loop as we progress with always changing policy as it relates to [Secure Communities],” reads a May 2010 email update from an unidentified sender about the controversial program. The... Read More

Report: New Obama Budget Should Cut Spending on Failed Immigration Enforcement

As President Obama prepares to release his 2012 budget on Monday, a new report suggests he should re-evaluate the price tag for two immigration enforcement programs that have failed to meet their mandate. The government spends $23,000 to deport a single immigrant, almost double what it previously estimated, suggests the report from the National Immigration Forum (NIF). It highlights costs associated with identifying, detaining, and deporting non-citizens... Read More

“In Detention” – Jan. 18, 2011

Editor’s note: This is the latest blog post from a 27-year-old college graduate who ran a small construction clean-up company in Arizona until he was stopped by police for a traffic infraction in late summer of 2010. After Yogi (not his real name) was arrested and fingerprinted his information was shared with Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE). He was then transferred from jail to ICE custody because he lacked proper immigration... Read More

Updated: Colorado May Limit Immigrants Targeted by “Secure Communities”

Colorado is set to become the first state to put significant limits on  Secure Communities, a program that shares local arrest data with federal immigration agents. Protection for domestic violence victims and new oversight measures appear alongside boilerplate language in a familiar “memorandum of agreement” (MOA) that 35 other states have signed with Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE). Deportation Nation reviewed the agreement... Read More

New York Braces for Fight on Secure Communities

Women in front of NY City Hall call for an end to local police collaboration with ICE. (Photo: Andalusa Knoll/Renée Feltz) This week Make the Road NY renewed its push to remove ICE agents from the Riker’s Island Jail where agents check inmate’s immigration status through the Criminal Alien Program (CAP), calling on Mayor Bloomberg to end it “with the stroke of a pen.” In a rally on Tuesday at City Hall, many speakers also... Read More

Then & Now: ICE “On the Record” About Opting-Out

An ICE memo on how to opt-out of Secure Communities is no longer online. Elise Foley got a tip that it “mysteriously disappeared” from the re-vamped ICE website. We thought it was worth looking at a few recent documents where various ICE officials explained how to make an opt-out request. It isn’t clear if ICE will follow its instructions when it starts to meet with counties that have requested to opt-out. Two meetings are scheduled... Read More

ICE Revamps Site, Continues PR Offensive on Secure Communities

ICE's revamped website, Editor’s note: The memo was actually dated June 2010. Another memo was removed from the new ICE website. “This program is revolutionary” Sheriff Bud E. Cox Davis County, Utah ICE has revamped its website, and one of the first things we noticed was a new cheat sheet called, “What Others Are Saying… About Secure Communities.” The guide features 11 testimonials, most of them appear... Read More

ICE Attributes Record Deportation Levels to Secure Communities

Department of Homeland Security Secretary Janet Napolitano announced today that ICE had the “highest number of removals in our nation’s history” during Fiscal Year 2010 – up to 392,000. During a press conference about the record-breaking results from Immigration and Custom’s Enforcement (ICE), she noted that “a major part of the reason for this increase has been the expansion of Secure Communities.” Someone... Read More

Counties on West & East Coast Vote to Opt-Out of Secure Communities

Onlookers cheer the Arlington County, VA, board's unanimous vote to opt-out of Secure Communities. Editor’s Update: ICE has since made conflicting comments about whether counties can, or cannot opt-out of Secure Communities. Tuesday marked what could be a historic turning point in efforts to opt-out of Secure Communities now that the process has been outlined by three high-level federal officials. The Board of Supervisors in Santa Clara... Read More

“We’re Not Feeling Any Safer,” Finds California Survey of Immigrant Communities

ICE collaboration with local police is causing strong distrust in the immigrant community, according to a study by the California Immigrant Policy Center called “We’re Not Feeling Any Safer.” “The harmful impacts described in the survey raise serious concerns about the rapid expansion of ‘Secure Communities’ and other initiatives that push local police to enforce immigration law,” said Isaac Menashe, one... Read More

Enforcement Desk Weekly Wrap-up: Most of those deported are non-criminals

Majority of those deported are non-criminals A newly released ICE annual report on Immigration Enforcement Actions tallies up apprehensions, detentions and deportations by the Department of Homeland Security (DHS). The figures include data from ICE and Customs and Border Patrol (CPB). Just like other recently released data, the report makes it clear ‘criminal aliens’ account for no more than a quarter of deportations. DHS Apprehensions  ... Read More