S.1440: PROTECT Immigration Act
The “Protecting the Rights Of Towns against Federal Enforcement contrary to Constitutional Tenets for Immigration Act”, or PROTECT Immigration Act, would discontinue a federal program that allows the Department of Homeland Security (DHS) to contract with state and local law enforcement to enforce federal immigration law, stating that enforcement is to be handled by the Federal Government exclusively. To do this, the legislation would repeal section 287(g) of the Immigration and Nationality Act.
The U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) reports that over eighty law enforcement agencies across 21 states have signed 287(g) agreements and are currently participating in a Customs Enforcement Partnership.
- 287(g) programs have been proven to have chilling effects in immigrant communities due to fears of inquiry about immigration status. Many members of these communities have reported a decreased likelihood of calling law enforcement after being the victim of a crime, and lower willingness to report any crime at all.
- Additionally, there have been instances of targeted racial profiling by local authorities involved in these programs in North Carolina, Arizona, and Florida. This is an equity issue, as well as a threat to public safety.
- The National Assembly is committed to fostering a culture of diversity, equity, and inclusion. The National Assembly envisions equity as the condition in which differences among people have no influence on how they fare in society.
- Equity is advanced through the implementation of policies, practices, attitudes, and cultural messages that prevent differential outcomes based on the differences among people. This requires a continuous reevaluation of norms, and a commitment to eliminating policies, practices, and systems that perpetuate inequity, so that all people are fully welcomed, valued, respected, and heard.
- The National Assembly supports the PROTECT Immigration Act because it would roll back policies that have led to systemic discrimination of immigrants.