Friday, March 3, 2017

US Police chiefs object to Trump's efforts to involve them in immigrant deportations

Police chiefs from across the US, including several from states that voted for Donald Trump, are resisting White House moves to force them to become more involved in deporting undocumented immigrants. In a joint letter, more than 60 law enforcement heads are appealing to Trump in all but name to soften his aggressive drive to enlist police officers in the highly contentious job of deporting millions of immigrants living without permission in the country. They object to being thrust into “new and sometimes problematic tasks” that will undermine the balance between the local communities they serve and the federal government, and “harm locally-based, community-oriented policing”.

The letter is signed by 61 current and former local police chiefs and sheriffs, many of whom come from states won by Trump last November including Alabama, Arizona, Florida, South Carolina and Texas. The political diversity and geographic spread of the signatories underlines the deep apprehension felt by many within the law enforcement community toward the president’s plans to beef up their role in rounding up, detaining and ultimately deporting huge numbers of people.

The letter, written under the auspices of the Law Enforcement Immigration Task Force, a coalition of senior law enforcement experts convened by the National Immigration Forum, does not mention Trump by name. But it indirectly references his administration’s efforts to force police to play a more central role in the deportation business... read more: