Federal Immigration Program
In a press conference, governor DeSantis announced he asked Florida Department of Corrections to review Florida’s participation in federal immigration program, known as the 287(g) Agreement, allowing trained officers to ask about a person’s immigration status once arrested. Under the agreement, local law enforcement officers are authorized to detain and investigate individuals on behalf of the U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) whom they suspect have violated federal immigration laws. In the state of Florida, five counties have signed on including Clay, Collier, Jacksonville, Hernando, and Pasco.
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Preemptive Prohibition of Sanctuary Cities
Presently, there is a bill that proposes a preemptive prohibition on cities and counties from limiting their cooperation with ICE – commonly referred to as “sanctuary cities.” Of note, no county jail in the state limits compliance with ICE detainers. These are petitions issued by federal immigration authorities asking jails to keep inmates suspected of being in the U.S. illegally after they are set to be released on the local charges pressed against them.
Early in 2018, 17 Florida sheriffs announced they would sign on to a pilot contract with ICE regarding detainers. The agreement would monetarily reimburse local jails $50 per inmate when the facility agrees to hold him or her for up to 48 hours for federal immigration authorities. According to news reports, governor DeSantis would like Florida’s state corrections departments to enter into a similar agreement with federal immigration authorities.
Concerns About the 287(g) Program
The 287(g) program has been widely criticized by civil-rights groups that allege it can dissuade immigrants from reporting crimes and lead to racial profiling by law enforcement officials. At least one lawsuit has been filed in the state of Florida after a U.S. citizen was transferred into ICE custody. Governor DeSantis noted that there are more than 4,500 immigrants in Florida’s prison system and those who are in the U.S. illegally should be repatriated back to their home country once their sentences for local criminal activity are over. While proponents of this approach to Florida’s immigration believe local cooperation with ICE helps streamline the process and keeps illegal criminal aliens off the streets, others have larger concerns. The American Civil Liberties Union (ACLU) claims the 287(g) program is a dangerous tool that can transform local law enforcement officers into immigration officers and promote civil rights abuses at a significant local cost.
The 287(g) program has been widely criticized by civil-rights groups that allege it can dissuade immigrants from reporting crimes and lead to racial profiling by law enforcement officials.
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Orlando Immigration Attorneys
If you or someone you know has questions about federal immigration laws or your rights when local authorities ask about your status, contact the experienced immigration attorneys at Bogin, Munns & Munns. Our Orlando immigration attorneys can explain your rights under the law and evaluate your specific case. Call us today to schedule your immigration consultation.
NOTICE: The article above is not intended to serve as legal advice, and you should not rely on it as such. It is offered only as general information. You should consult with a duly licensed attorney regarding your Florida legal matter, as every situation is unique. Please know that merely reading this article, subscribing to this blog, or otherwise contacting Bogin, Munns & Munns does not establish an attorney-client relationship with our firm. Should you seek legal representation from Bogin, Munns & Munns, any such representation must first be agreed to by the firm and confirmed in a written agreement.
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