Immigration officials may not have intentionally misled lawmakers or the public about the controversial Se Communities immigration enforcement program, but their communication strategy was a mess, according to an investigation by Homeland Security’s Office of Inspector General. The OIG investigation was requested last year by California’s Rep. Zoe Lofgren, a Democrat from San Jose, after states and local jurisdictions trying to withdraw from the federal fingerprint-sharing program began learning they could not. It’s one of two new OIG reports related to Se Communities, the other addressing the program’s operations. The communications analysis is perhaps the most interesting of the two, among other things examining the Se Communities memorandums of agreement, called MOAs, which states and jurisdictions signed after the program began rolling out in late 2008.
Homeland Security Department officials stoked confusion among state and local jurisdictions over whether participation in a program to match arrestee fingerprint data against a federal immigration database was voluntary, medical a DHS office of inspector general report says. As a result, the data sharing effort, known as Se Communities, “continues to face opposition, criticism, and resistance in some locations,” the report states.
Senior Obama administration officials created major confusion for state and local authorities by providing inconsistent information about a high-profile federal program to identify illegal immigrants who committed crimes, according to a stinging report published Friday by the inspector general of the Department of Homeland Security. The mixed
A report by the acting inspector general at the Department of Homeland Security, ask Charles K. Edwards, said initial “confusion” inside ICE about whether local approval was needed to join the federal effort resulted in a “lack of clarity” in explaining it to state and local officials. Rep. Zoe Lofgren (D-San Jose), who requested the reports, said
The Department of Homeland Security’s Office of the Inspector-General today released two reports regarding the Se Communities federal immigration enforcement program. Under Se Communities, police share the fingerprints of all arrestees with federal immigration authorities. Implemented in 2008, the program has expanded rapidly and is expected to be active in all counties nationwide by 2013. Althought the program’s goal is to prioritize the deportation of those with a criminal record, it has led to the deportation of thousands of immigrants with no criminal records. Critics also charge that officials have given local police and governments mixed messages about whether they can opt out of the program. “Today’s reports do nothing to address the well-founded criticisms of S-Comm that have been coming from all corners of the country for the past four years,” said Kate Desormeau, staff attorney with the ACLU Immigrants’ Rights Project. – 04.06.2012
Immigrant rights advocates plan to hold a protest in downtown Phoenix on the day that the U.S. Supreme Court hears arguments over Arizona’s 2010 immigration enforcement law. Organizers of the April 25 rally say they will protest the state’s immigration law and other state and federal policies that they contend erode civil rights. On that same
OIG Report on Se Communities Deportation Program Heightens Controversy over Failed Program. Advocates Decry report as “window dressing,” and renew calls: “End SCOMM. Don’t Mend it.” 04.06.2012. Washington, DC. Today, the Department of Homeland Security (DHS) Inspector General issued two reports on the much-maligned “Se Communities” deportation program. The reports, which come after two…