“Comunidades Inseguridad”: Mas Migrantes De NYC Deportados Por Agentes Federales

(En Inglés) Por Renee Feltz, ilustraciones de Stokely Baksh, traducción de Vladimir Flores García. Era una noche reciente de sábado en Jackson Heights cuando un grupo de hombres se encontraron para disfrutar de unos tragos en un bar con clientela internacional. De salida a la avenida Roosevelt, las ruidosas conversaciones del grupo fueron interrumpidas por dos agentes del NYPD. Quienes eran indocumentados corrieron y los varios que se no dispersaron... Read More

(Video) Advocates Ask ICE: Why No Opt-Out of Secure Communities?

Secure Communities Director, David Venturella, spoke at the Wilson Center last Friday. PHOTO: Stokely Baksh Last week the director of Secure Communities tried to put an end to the debate over whether or not the controversial program is mandatory. “At this point the position of the administration is that local communities will not be able to opt-out of Secure Communities,” said David Venturella, while speaking to a room packed with immigrant... Read More

Updated: Domestic Violence Survivor Confronts Secure Communities Director

There were several tense moments today when David Venturella, the assistant director of Secure Communities, addressed a room full of immigration advocates at the Woodrow Wilson Center. “This is a tough topic,” Venturella said during his opening remarks. “I understand it elicits a lot of emotion.” At one point, Maria Bolanos, a domestic violence victim who’s call for help led to deportation proceedings, confronted David... Read More

Distrust of Police Grows as Santa Clara is Forced Into Secure Communities Without Reimbursement

Can counties opt-out of a controversial immigration enforcement partnership after a state agrees to participate? In three recent meetings, ICE had the same message. “They said no,” said Eileen Hirst, Chief of Staff for the San Francisco Sheriff Department. David Venturella, assistant director for the Secure Communities program Secure Communities Director David Venturella flew to California on Tuesday to drive the point home in person during... Read More

Advocates Try to Speed Release of Opt-out Docs Ahead of ICE Meetings

Three counties plan to meet with Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) in the next two weeks to discuss  how they can opt-out of Secure Communities. But officials say they have no idea what to expect. “I urgently need more information about Secure Communities for my November 8, 2010, meeting with ICE… so I can adequately represent the interests of my constituents,” said San Francisco Sheriff Michael Hennessey. Hennessey’s... Read More

DHS Watchdog: Still No Way to Reliably Evaluate 287(g)

ICE’s internal watchdog has released the latest in its series of special reports on the 287(g) program that empowers local police to enforce immigration laws. The AP’s story on the report from the Office of the Inspector General focused on missing funds used to send ICE inspectors to review participating law enforcement agencies, and cited this part of the review: “We made numerous requests for specific program funding data, and... Read More

ICE Activates Secure Communities in Arizona, West Virginia

ICE announced today that every local law enforcement agency in Arizona and West Virginia is now sharing arrest data with immigration agents through the Secure Communities program. The move is likely to help the Obama administration top its record of 392,000 deportations in FY 2010. Seven out of fifteen counties in Arizona have been enrolled in the program since the state first opted-in on Dec. 23, 2008, most of them along the US-Mexico border. By... 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

Forced Into Immigration Enforcement, A County Considers Plan B

When a single-mother of three got into a car accident while driving without a license in Hayward, California, she met a fate common to undocumented immigrants. “A police officer told me he needed to take me to the police department where my fingerprints would be taken, said the woman, who shared her story with Deportation Nation by way of Somos Mayfair, but asked to remain anonymous. While she was at the jail, Immigration and Customs Enforcement... Read More

ICE Revamps Site, Continues PR Offensive on Secure Communities

ICE's revamped website, www.ice.gov. 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

Deporation Nation launches “Story Line,” can you help spread the word?

Theirs is a story that needs to be told. Tens of thousands of immigrants are being arrested by local law enforcement agencies and now face detention or deportation. But their voices are not heard from behind detention walls. We want to change that. We are launching a project to record these stories and post them on the web, adding detainee voices to a critical discussion about the use of local police to enforce federal immigration laws. The “Story... 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

Napolitano Confirms Secure Communities Opt-Out Process

We recently asked, “Is it Really Possible to Opt-Out of Secure Communities?” Now Deportation Nation has learned that Department of Homeland Security head Janet Napolitano confirmed the opt-out process in letter sent Sept. 7 to Representative Zoe Lofgren (D-CA). Napolitano’s letter comes in response to an inquiry made by Lofgren in a July 27 letter to Napolitano and U.S. Attorney General Eric Holder about confusion over the opt-out... Read More

Is it really possible to opt-out of Secure Communities?

Last Thursday federal officials released a memo called “Setting the Record Straight” that outlines for the first time how local police can opt-out of sharing arrest data with immigration authorities via enrollment in the “Secure Communities” program. But so far, the process exists only on paper. The memo from Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) states: All of these steps sounded familiar to San Francisco County Sheriff... 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

FOIA by Advocates Prompts ICE to Release 31 Secure Communities Docs

Several immigration advocacy organizations filed a lawsuit in April to demand ICE reply to their open records request about Secure Communities, which operates in 494 jurisdictions in 27 states and has more than $1 billion in funding behind it. Now ICE has responded by releasing 31 new documents related to the program. They show that about a quarter of the  people deported after being turned over to ICE at local jails had no criminal record. This... Read More

Deportations Surge Under Obama

Last week Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) released new figures about the volume of people it has deported so far during Fiscal Year 2010. Now TRAC has crunched the numbers. Here are their key findings: ICE deported 279,035 immigrants compared to 254,763 at this same point last year. The number of non-citizens deported in the first nine months of FY 2010 is up 10 percent from 2008, the last comparable year under the Bush administration. The... Read More

Detention Costs are Rising

As more counties become enrolled in Secure Communities they require more funds to cover the cost of holding “criminal aliens” in local jails. Meanwhile federal officials say the cost of detention space has been higher than expected. Top 20 recipients of 2009 SCAAP funds. Credit: U.S. Department of Justice Local police have tried to cover costs by applying for grants with the State Criminal Alien Assistance Program (SCAAP), which offers... Read More

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