Groups Say Immigrant Detention
Policy Doesn’t Go Far Enough
21, 2014 Tom Joseph
- Mayor Michael Nutter is preparing to sign an order pulling back on an
agreement to let undocumented immigrants who are arrested in the city be
detained by federal agents.
immigration advocates say it doesn't go far enough.
expected action on Immigration and Customs Enforcement, or ICE, would end the
detention practice except in cases where the crimes committed were violent
Kligerman, a spokeswoman for the New Sanctuary Movement of Philadelphia, says
any level of the practice is too much.
holds are non-mandatory requests from federal deportation agents to local law
enforcement to hold people in local law-enforcement custody who would otherwise
be released, and this is exclusively because of their immigration status,"
she points out.
agreement in Philadelphia began six years ago, giving federal agents access to
local arrest records.
even immigrants here legally on green cards can be deported if they are found
guilty of a felony.
say it penalizes immigrants in instances where they would otherwise be free on
says the arrangement also boils down to Philadelphia taxpayers subsidizing
federal deportation programs.
issues are moral issues and the city of Philadelphia has decided that deportation
is an essential service, while cutting other actual essential services to
Philadelphians," she stresses.
groups such as New Sanctuary also say they want more input on decisions like
this that have such wide-ranging impact on the immigrant community.