A bill introduced to the State Senate could prevent local police from detaining immigrants for ICE.
The bill is sponsored by state Sen. Jose Serrano (D-Queens) and would extend the protections some “sanctuary cities” in the state already give to their residents to the entire state. New York authorities would be prohibited from detaining immigrants – except for those with violent criminal records – on behalf of ICE.
The measure has been debated in Albany in previous sessions, but after Democrats won Senate control last November, it is closer to reality than in previous years. Democrat and Chronicle
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ICE Agents Appear at a Westchester Court the Day After New York State Restricts Access
Last Wednesday, the Office of Court Administration ordered officers to start requiring Immigrants and Customs Enforcement agents to present judicial warrants when making arrests at courthouses. Yet one day later, ICE agents showed up at Carlos Duque’s court hearing over charges of driving with a false license. Duque and his family realized that if he was released, ICE would likely detain him and deport him back to Colombia. The court where Duque had his hearing belonged to the town and village system, which isn’t under the OCA’s jurisdiction and isn’t affected by the rule change. These courts see some 2 million cases per year, according to the state. Read more at Documented.
Cuomo Signals Support of Act to Limit ICE Access to Courts
Gov. Andrew Cuomo (D) said he would support legislative action to limit ICE’s power in New York, including the Protect Our Courts Act, in a recent radio interview. The legislation would expand the recent rule change from the OCA, and also expand the boundaries around courthouses where ICE agents are prohibited from making arrests. “I want to do nothing to cooperate with ICE, and the less we can facilitate what they’re doing the better, as far as I’m concerned. I think they’ve trampled on constitutional rights,” Cuomo said. Democrats Sen. Brad Hoylman and Assemblywoman Michaelle Solages introduced the legislation in January.New York Law Journal
New Jersey Township Rejects Sanctuary Status
Middletown, New Jersey has formally rejected becoming a so-called ‘sanctuary’ jurisdiction. Earlier this month, the township passed “A Resolution Opposing New Jersey Becoming a Sanctuary State and Resolving that the Township of Middletown Shall Never Become a Sanctuary City,” though there was some opposition from community members. The resolution was drafted in response to Attorney General Gurbir Grewal’s Immigrant Trust Directive, which prohibits law enforcement officers from detaining individuals on actual or suspected immigration status and stops them from asking individuals about their status, among other directives. centraljersey.com
Mayor of Arizona City Declares State of Emergency
The mayor of Yuma, Arizona has declared a state of emergency in the city of 100,000 over a surge of immigrant arrivals. Border patrol agents have been releasing migrants wholesale into the city, which has just one shelter with 200 beds. The mayor is asking for state and federal funds to provide them with aid. “It’s like if a hurricane’s coming and you don’t prepare for it. This is the same kind of thing,” Mayor Douglas Nicholls said. More than 24,000 families crossed the border near Yuma between October 2018 and March 2019, an increase of 273 percent from a year before. There aren’t frequent buses in the city, meaning many migrants become stranded there. CBS News
DHS Scouring for More Space to House Detained Migrants
Federal authorities are scouring the country’s jails and detention centers for extra space to house the migrants they’re detaining. ICE is also fast-tracking the deportation of detainees and releasing many more to make room for those more recently detained. Department of Homeland Security officials briefly considered housing migrant children at Guantánamo Bay earlier this year before the proposal died out. The federal government is unlikely to detain migrants at the notorious prison, but is currently looking at other military properties to perhaps house the children. ICE is currently housing over 50,000 migrants, one of the highest populations of detained immigrants ever recorded. The New York Times
Rights Group Asks Facebook to Address Fake Profiles
The Electronic Frontier Foundation is calling on Facebook to address the growth of fake profiles law enforcement officials are using to conduct investigations. ICE investigators have created fake profiles tied to a fictional university to root out people committing immigration fraud, which is against Facebook’s policies. That investigation caught 600 students, mostly Indian citizens. “Facebook’s practice of taking down these individual accounts when they learn about them from the press is insufficient to deter what we believe is a much larger iceberg beneath the surface,” EEF researcher Dave Maass wrote. Facebook said it has contacted the DHS to express concerns about its use of the social network. The Guardian
Migrant Caravan Faces Hostile Civilians and Government in Mexico
Central American migrants traveling to the U.S. say they’re experiencing a tougher journey than past migrant caravans. That’s because they’ve faced hostile civilians and raids by Mexican police and immigration agents, including one large raid where Mexican authorities say they detained 367 people. “They were grabbing us mercilessly, like we were animals,” one member of the caravan said after the raid, adding that “that’s a barbarity, because we’re all human.” Previous migrant caravans were seemingly more welcomed by both Mexico and communities they passed through. The reception grew colder after the Trump administration heightened border security amid the recent record number of border crossings. Associated Press
Washington — Trump Seeks Visa Overstay Crackdown, Supreme Court Leaning Towards Allowing Citizenship Question, Stephen Miller Personally Involved in Deportations
President Donald Trump has decided to sharpen restrictions against people who stay beyond their visa deadlines, which is statistically how most people in the United States end up undocumented. The president signed a memorandum ordering the secretaries of state and homeland security to draw up plans to curb overstays. Potential punishments include forcing people from countries with high rates of overstays to pay deposits when they enter the U.S., and letting them collect those so-called “admission bonds” when they leave.
“Although the United States benefits from legitimate (non-immigrant) entry, individuals who abuse the visa process and decline to abide by the terms and conditions of their visas, including their visa departure dates, undermine the integrity of our immigration system and harm the national interest,” the memorandum reads. More than 600,000 foreigners overstayed their visas each year from 2016 to 2017, which accounts for an estimated half of people who became undocumentedduring that time.
Immigration enforcement has largely focused on securing the border, despite the majority of new undocumented immigrants arriving with valid visas. Still, enforcement for these visas is proving difficult. Trump ordered Secretary of State Mike Pompeo to “engage with governments” of countries which saw more than 10 percent of their citizens overstay visas. Trump has also ordered Acting Homeland Security Secretary Kevin McAleenan to start looking into the issue. USA Today
The Supreme Court seems ready to uphold the Trump administration’s plan to include a question about U.S. citizenship on the 2020 Census. Lower courts have blocked the plan so far, finding the question could discourage census participation. Yet during a hearing, conservative justice Brett Kavanaugh suggested Congress could change the law if it was concerned with the census’ accuracy. The conservative judges were largely quiet as Solicitor General Noel Francisco’s testimony defended the question’s addition, while the liberal justices asked him questions about the plan. “This is a solution in search of a problem,” Justice Sonia Sotomayor said about the question. Associated Press
A group of White House aides visited Paris in summer 2017 as Trump made his first trip to France as president. Senior Adviser Stephen Miller was among the group, and as two sources recall to Politico, stepped aside to take a phone call in which he spent several minutes loudly trying to get officials to deport someone detained by immigration authorities. Miller has been at the heart of many of the administration’s hardline immigration policies, including the recent purge of DHS officials, the travel ban and Trump’s aggressive push for the border wall. Yet this report shows that Miller took deeply involved steps toward deporting individuals and revealing personal details about them. “At one point, he wanted us to be releasing press releases every day about the people we had detained and their criminal status. We were constantly doing a dance just to remain in a legal place,” a former DHS official said. Politico