Juana Villegas’s story is a shocking example of what happens when local law enforcement is endowed with the authority to enforce immigration law.
One of the fastest growing programs under this scheme is the 287(g) program. With its growth, we are also seeing an increase in reports highlighting its failures, including an almost complete lack of oversight and as we have seen in Juana’s story, numerous instances of unlawful racial profiling and human rights violations.
On a more important note, the program hinders the ability of law enforcement to accomplish their primary goal – to protect the safety and security of the communities they police. Communities become less safe when crime victims are afraid to cooperate with police, especially victims of violent crimes, because they are afraid of deportation. And we all become at risk when people are afraid of police.
While the Department of Homeland Security has even acknowledged some of its failures, and made some changes, none of this has actually improved the program. This is why a coalition of 500 advocacy groups sent a letter to President Obama last week demanding an end to the 287(g) programs that violate human rights and lead to racial profiling.
Take action now. Send a letter to Secretary Napolitano and stand up for the rights of all people in the United States.