Trump Getting Help in Immigration Crackdown from Local Police Departments

Local police departments are reportedly helping President Trump in his immigration crackdown by enrolling in a program that allows them to verify the immigration status of individuals they detain.

According to a Reuters investigation, 29 police departments have enrolled in the program, known as 287 (g), since Trump’s inauguration.. The program provides local law enforcement with the ability to perform some of the same duties as immigrations officials.

“If deporting you out of this country when you commit a crime is a tool at my disposal, you are darn right I am going to use it,” the town’s public safety director, Fred Harran, told the news outlet.


Backlog in NY Immigration Court Leaves Most Undocumented Children Without Lawyers

More than 88,000 undocumented youths are currently backlogged in the nation’s immigration courts, according to federal court data compiled by the Transactional Records Access Clearinghouse (TRAC) at Syracuse University. Even as the overall number of undocumented children entering the U.S. has dropped, this backlog has grown, TRAC reports.

Together with a lack of legal representation for many of these youths, immigration courts have become increasingly chaotic, according to attorneys representing undocumented immigrants and the non-profit groups that seek to assist them. That chaos is particularly evident in New York, where changes in policies under the Trump administration have left most cases involving undocumented juveniles in limbo.

Nearly two-thirds of those youths show up in New York’s court unrepresented by lawyers. That’s the highest number of unrepresented defendants since TRAC began analyzing such data in 2005. Not having an attorney makes an undocumented immigrant five times more likely to be deported.



The Fate of 700,000 Dreamers Hang in the Balance

The fate of 700,000 “dreamers,” undocumented young immigrants brought to the United States as children, hang in the balance. Congress, facing a March deadline, has provided no legal means for dreamers to remain in the country.

The haggling over dreamers is Washington at its dysfunctional worst. President Trump pledged publicly to back a straightforward deal with the Democrats under which the immigrants are granted legal status, in return for some simple concessions on border security. Then, under pressure from hard-liners in the Republican base, he pivoted to a set of maximalist demands, including funding to build a border wall and reductions in legal immigration.

Democrats, having failed for more than 15 years to enact legislation to allow dreamers to stay in the country, now threaten to block a must-pass spending bill, potentially shutting down the government, unless the measure is amended to resolve the impasse.

ICE’s Courthouse Arrests Undercut Democracy

Lawyers and judges in Arizona, California, Colorado, Connecticut, New Jersey, New York, Oregon, Texas and Washington all reported in the first year of the Trump administration that immigration officials were breaking with tradition, taking immigrants in custody at courthouses. Such arrests in New York have increased by 900 percent in 2017, according to the Immigration Defense Project.

This don’t just derail the lives of the unsuspecting people who are detained, they threaten the very operation of our judicial system. Such arrests scare people away from the courts, keeping them, for example, from testifying at trials or seeking orders of protection.

Boston Murals Send Message of Love to Immigrants

The murals, which began cropping up this summer, juxtapose real life Boston immigrants from past generations with more recent newcomers.

The works of art also include a quote translated into Spanish, Italian, Yiddish and other languages: “You will always be welcome in the city of Boston.”

“It’s a very powerful message of welcome,” says Veronica Robles, the recent Mexican immigrant featured in one of the murals. “It makes people feel safe and appreciated. More than ever, that’s an important message to put out there.”

With Chances of Immigration Deal Fading, Supporters Mount Big Push

With prospects dimming for a deal this year to prevent young immigrants brought to the U.S. as children from deportation, sympathetic groups are planning to push hard over the next few weeks to force the issue back to the top of Washington’s agenda.

Activists see their December bid as their last, best shot to save about 800,000 young immigrants protected by the Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals, or DACA, program from being deported.

The new initiatives to save DACA start this week, when caravans of the young immigrants will start arriving in Washington. Activists are planning rallies in front of the White House, sit-ins on Capitol Hill and, possibly, other acts of civil disobedience.

Chicago Immigration Raid Leaves Swiss Baker Scrambling to Restaff

A Swiss maker of hamburger buns for McDonald’s Corp. said it’s struggling to run a Chicago bakery after it lost a third of its workers in a clampdown on 800 immigrants without sufficient documentation.

About 35% of the workers at Cloverhill Bakery had to be replaced, according to Zurich-based Aryzta AG.

The raid on workers at Cloverhill is one of the biggest U.S. employment headaches reported by a European company so far as President Donald Trump has made curbing undocumented immigration a centerpiece of his presidency. Aryzta said it faces challenges in retaining staff in the U.S. and pressure to raise wages.