287g Local Immigration Enforcement Under Fire

By Seth Freed Wessler Apr 09, 2010

In Obama’s first 15 months in Office, the US continued to deport record numbers of people. The trends result from the Administration’s continued investment in immigration enforcement programs and quotas that advocates, law enforcement officials and others have long protested. Now, it appears one the most destructive of these tactics–the 287g program– may be coming undone. A Department of Homeland Security Inspector General report released earlier this week, found that the 287g program is "not operating in compliance with the terms of the agreements" and called for it to be fixed. The program, which deputizes local police officers to enforce civil immigration laws, is well documented to facilitate racial profiling, instill fear of police among immigrant communities and siphon hundreds of thousands of immigrants into the deportation process. Numerous reports have documented widespread abuses in the program since the Bush Administration began leaning on it to meet it’s deportation goals. The DHS report finds that 287g has led to the apprehension of immigrants who pose no threat, has let woefully under trained local cops enforce laws they were never meant to enforce and facilitates abuse. This morning the New York Times published an editorial calling for the full termination of the 287g program. It’s a demand advocates from the around the country have been making for years and now the ball appears to be rolling in that direction.