Immigration measure OK’d by Amherst Select Board; heads to Town Meeting

The Select Board has thrown its support behind a resolution critical of a federal immigration enforcement program and the town’s participation in it – and now Town Meeting will weigh in on the matter. Residents concerned about the Se Communities Act sought to pass the resolution but town officials said the measure could jeopardize state and federal police grants. Town Manager John Musante worked with town counsel Kopelman & Paige to come up with a revised version of the resolution, which states the town’s intention to not participate in federal law enforcement programs related to immigration enforcement. The Select Board Monday unanimously supported the resolution. “It does reflect what Amherst is about,” said Select Board member Aaron Hayden. Ruth Hooke of Precinct 8, who drafted the original version, said she is satisfied with the revision. The intention of the article is to counter the Se Communities program run by U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement, which supporte

Asm. Ammiano formally introduces “TRUST Act 2.0” to counteract discredited deportation program

70,000 CA deportations under “Se” Communities program spark anger;

Bill puts state at forefront of movement to curb burdensome immigration detentions in local jails

Sacramento, CA – As the imposition of the scandal-plagued “Se” Communities or S-Comm deportation program in Massachusetts and New York today spurs fresh controversy, California Assemblymember Tom Ammiano (D-SF) formally introduced a revamped version of AB 1081, the TRUST Act, to reform California’s participation in the program. 

The new incarnation of AB 1081, which captured national attention last year, formally appeared “in print”  late yesterday and will pick up where the previous version left off, in the state Senate. The bill is expected to be heard in the Senate Public Safety committee next month. (Background information below.)

Feds Use Counter-Terrorism Laws to Fuel Deportation Machine

Jose Barahona says that he would have been killed had he refused to open his door when the armed guerillas occupying his town demanded he let them use his kitchen and sleep on his floor. He says that’s what happened to his father. Dead. And he says it was because of the fear of death during the war raging between the FMLN guerillas and the Salvadoran government that at the age of 24, with his new wife and baby boy, he left his Salvadoran mountain village and came to the United States where the couple would have two more children and where he’d spend the next two and half decades. He thought he’d left all the violence behind. Twenty six years after that departure, on March 22nd 2011, now 51-year-old Barahona was shuttled from a Virginia immigration detention center to an immigration court

Se Communities gear up is the mother of all flawed immigration policies

The announcement came just in time for Mother’s Day: Se Communities, the arbitrary and despised Department of Homeland Security program that requires states to identify immigrants for deportation, ed is expected to be activated across New York State, including in New York City, on Tuesday. In a brave gesture Gov. Cuomo, nearly a year ago, unsuccessfully tried to remove the state from the deportation program that is also strongly opposed by law enforcement officials and domestic violence groups across the country. These groups correctly believe Se Communities undermines public safety by compromising the trust between police and the communities they serve, in addition to encouraging racial profiling, separating families and even deports U.S. citizens. Despite the criticism, the calls for reform or for ending it, and Cuomo’s concern, the Obama administration has continued imposing the fundamentally flawed program in blatant disregard of the human cost and dire consequences.

Obama’s Broken 2008 Immigration Promises Create Dilemma For Democrats

Rep. Luis Gutierrez (D-Ill.), one of President Barack Obama’s most vocal critics on immigration, was sitting at dinner with his family a couple of weeks ago when his youngest daughter began talking about the president’s “terrible” deportation record. “If they invite us to the White House, I won’t go,” the 24-year-old said, according to Gutierrez. His wife, though, summed up the family’s mixed feelings on the president and immigration. “Yes — but you should clarify that notwithstanding that, we’re all voting for him,” his wife said, according to the congressman. “We can be angry, but we cannot vote for” Mitt Romney, the presumptive Republican nominee. To many supporters of immigration reform, Obama has been a major disappointment.

Obama’s Broken 2008 Immigration Promises Create Dilemma For Democrats

Rep. Luis Gutierrez (D-Ill.), one of President Barack Obama’s most vocal critics on immigration, was sitting at dinner with his family a couple of weeks ago when his youngest daughter began talking about the president’s “terrible” deportation record. “If they invite us to the White House, I won’t go,” the 24-year-old said, according to Gutierrez. His wife, though, summed up the family’s mixed feelings on the president and immigration. “Yes — but you should clarify that notwithstanding that, we’re all voting for him,” his wife said, according to the congressman. “We can be angry, but we cannot vote for” Mitt Romney, the presumptive Republican nominee. To many supporters of immigration reform, Obama has been a major disappointment.

ICE to Expand Se Communities Program in Mass. and N.Y. – NYTimes.com

Obama administration officials have announced that a contentious fingerprinting program to identify illegal immigrants will be extended across Massachusetts and New York next week, expanding federal enforcement efforts despite opposition from the governors and immigrant groups in those states. In blunt e-mails sent Tuesday to officials and the police in the two states, Immigration and Customs Enforcement officials said the program, Se Communities, would be activated “in all remaining jurisdictions” this Tuesday. Last June, Gov. Deval Patrick of Massachusetts declined to sign an agreement with the immigration agency to expand Se Communities beyond a pilot program in the Boston area since 2006. Gov. Andrew Cuomo of New York said he wanted to suspend the program, which had already been initiated in a number of counties.

Mayoral Candidates Oppose Fingerprinting Program – NYTimes.com

The expected Democratic candidates for mayor may have their differences, there but they are unified in their opposition to New York City’s participation in Se Communities, there a controversial fingerprinting program meant to identify illegal immigrants. Last week, Immigration and Customs Enforcement officials announced that they planned to extend the program across New York and Massachusetts on Tuesday, despite opposition from the governors of both states. The program requires the fingerprints of anyone arrested by the local or state police to be checked against databases of the Department of Homeland Security, which include immigration violations. If someone is found to be in the country illegally, immigration officials may ask the police to hold the person to be picked up by federal agents.

The Lower Floor of the Supreme Court – NYTimes

by Linda Greenhouse, New York Times, 05.02.2012

I found last week’s Supreme Court argument in the Arizona immigration case utterly depressing, and I’ve spent the intervening week puzzling over my reaction. It’s not simply that the federal government seems poised to lose: unlike the appeals court, the justices appear likely to find the heart of Arizona’s mean-spirited “attrition through enforcement” statute, S.B. 1070, permissible under federal law.

Poring over the argument transcript and the briefs, what finally came through as most deeply troubling was this: the failure of any participant in the argument, justice or advocate for either side, to affirm the simple humanity of Arizona’s several hundred thousand undocumented residents.