Stop ICE's Insecure Communities
Recent immigration enforcement efforts by the Department of Homeland Security (DHS) have focused increasingly on collaboration between Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) and local law enforcement. One of the main ICE programs that relies on local resources is the so-called “Secure Communities” program.
“Secure Communities” allows state and local police to check the fingerprints of any individual they are booking into a jail against DHS immigration databases. If there is a “hit” in an immigration database, ICE is automatically notified, even if the person hasn’t been convicted of a crime. While its stated purpose is to target “dangerous criminal aliens,” the program has undermined community trust and indiscriminately targeted and destroyed immigrant families and communities.
In response to the spread of ICE's harmful policies, a group of organizations including OneAmerica have launched the Stop ICE's Insecure Communities campaign to fight back against ICE's divisive "Secure Communities" Program. The campaign has four primary goals:
- Stop the spread of ICE's divisive "Secure Communities" program in Washington State;
- Move Washington State counties who have opted-in to "Secure Communities" to reconsider their decision.
- Educate the community and local law enforcement on "Secure Communities" and its impacts; and
- Create spaces for immigrant communities to voice their concerns and participate in the decision-making process around "Secure Communities."
Around the nation, many public officlals, civil rights groups, and immigrant communities have spoken up about the harmful impact of "Secure Communities." The governors of Illinois, New York, and Massachusetts have all chosen to opt their states out of the program due to the failure of Secure Communities to achieve its goals to only deport criminals who pose serious threats to public safety. In December 2011, Congressman Adam Smith from Washington's 9th congressional district also wrote to Secretary of Homeland Security Janet Napolitano urging changes to "Secure Communities."
Meanwhile, OneAmerica is continuing to organize communities in multiple counties across Washington state to urge local law enforcement and elected officials to hold open dialogue with communities about the repercussions of Secure Communities.
Stop ICE's Insecure Communities Co-Sponsors:
OneAmerica, Northwest Immigrant Rights Project, Church Council of Greater Seattle, Washington Association of Churches, Washington New Sanctionary Movement, Asian Pacific Islander Coalitions of King and Pierce Counties, Washington CAN!
Secure Communities Toolkit
The Stop ICE's Insecure Communities campaign has prepared and compiled some valuable resources to help advocates educate and organize their communities around the detrimental impacts of the "Secure Communities" program. Resources on other ICE enforcement programs can be viewed at OneAmerica's Local Enforcement webpage.
Washington State Fact Sheet
General Fact Sheets
Secure Communities Policy Analysis (National Immigration Forum)
"Secure Communities" Fact Sheet (National Immigration Forum)
"Secure Communities" Fact Sheet (Immigrant Policy Center)
ICE ACCESS Program One-Pager (Immigrant Justice Network)
Fiscal Impact of Civil Immigration Detainers (Make the Road, New York)
Pushback from Elected Officials
Letter from Governor Patrick of Massachusetts to DHS, June 3, 2011
Letter from Governor Cuomo of New York to DHS, June 1, 2011
Letter from Rep. Lofgren to DHS, May 17, 2011
VIDEO: "New immigration screening angers some residents" (KNDO, Yakima)
"US to Investigate Secure Communities Deportation Program" (Los Angeles Times)
"Secure Communities" Destroys Public Trust Op-Ed (Op-ed by Sheriff in San Francisco Chronicle)
"How a Democracy Works," New York Times Editorial, June 3, 2011
Mr. Obama can bolster public safety by pulling the plug on Secure Communities, program that sends fingerprints of everyone booked by state or local police to Department of Homeland Security databases to be checked for immigration violations. It was supposed to focus on dangerous felons, but the heavy majority of those it catches are noncriminals or minor offenders — more than 30 percent have no convictions for anything.
The president should listen to the many law enforcement professionals and local officials, like the governors of New York and Illinois, who want nothing to do with Secure Communities. They say it endangers the public by catching the wrong people and stifling community cooperation with law enforcement.
"Secure Communities" Are Unsafe for Anyone (Op-ed in Santa Barabara Independent)
Press Release on "Secure Communities" Threat to Victims of Violence (Colorado Immigrant Rights Coalition)
State Pulls Out of Controversial Immigration Program (Chicago News Cooperative)
"State Was Given False Promises When it Came to Fingerprint Sharing Program" (New York Daily News)
Spanish-language Cartoon Explaining "Secure Communities" (CASA de Maryland)
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Stop ICE's Insecure Communities Campaign
Batalla Contra Comunidades Seguars en Vancouver
Delia Hernandez, Univision KUNP - November 29, 2011
Some opposed to ICE’s Secure Communities…
Karma Dickerson, KNDO-TV - June 2, 2011
OneAmerica Tries to Stop Counties from Sending Fingerprints to Immigration Authorities
Nina Shapiro, Seattle Weekly - June 2, 2011
New Program Checks Inmates Legal Residency Status, ICE Record
Ian Cull, KAPP-TV - June 1, 2011
Public Meetings to Discuss "Secure Communities"
Join the Stop ICE's Insecure Communities campaign for our first community dialogue about "Secure Communities" in Yakima!
When: 6pm, Wednesday, June 1
Where: Holy Redeemer Church, 1707 S. 3rd Ave. between Washington & Mead Avenues. Yakima
Push It Out on Social Media!
Individually packaged tweets and status updates to share on Twitter and Facebook:
#Yakima county, your community has been signed up for #SComm. Public meeting June 1, 6pm, Holy Redeemer Church #stopice http://bit.ly/lYye1g
#SComm has hidden costs that place burden on cash-strapped local govts: Sign the petition! http://bit.ly/lYye1g #stopice
#SComm hurts community policing by eroding trust btw communities & local police. #stopice Sign the petition: http://bit.ly/lYye1g
#SComm indiscriminately destroys families & communities. Sign the petition: http://bit.ly/lYye1g #stopice
#SComm rolled out in #Washington State with no public input. #stopice Sign the petition: http://bit.ly/lYye1g
#SComm investigated by own Inspector General for total fail: http://bit.ly/lYye1g #stopice