Hotline Help for US Immigration Detainees
US immigration office launches new telephone hotline for immigration detainees held by local police. It is created to know about their rights and to ensure it. It was announced by federal immigration official Thursday.
.Detainees held by state or local law enforcement agencies and “believe they may be US citizens or victims of crime”, can enquire and get replies through the toll-free telephone number (855)448-6903. It was announced by the US Immigration and Customs Enforcement Agency. In online more information would be posted about hotline- a ICE official, in Washington , dot not disclose more, as they are not authorized to say.
The statement said that multilingual interpreter, sufficient staffs with ICE personnel will serve in hotline 24 hours of a day, 7 days of a week. For rapid action the query will be received by a ICE personnel and send it to the relevant ICE Enforcement and Removal Operation Field Office.
ICE officials said about a new plan to issue a form for detainees in several languages such as English, Spanish , French, Portuguese, Chinese and Vietnamese. It will inform the detainees about the ICE’s assumption regrding their custody within 48 hours. The sample copy of form will be available online Thursday.
In the statement there is an advice for the individuals that if they are not be taken to custody by ICE within 48 hours, they have to contact with the law enforcing agency and those who are investigating about them for their release from state or local custody.
It makes a controversy about the power of local law enforcement agency to detain those people who are believed to be illegal immigrants.
Federal law does not enforced by police normally. But regarding suspects, criminals police has responsibility to turn over them to immigration authorities for possible deportation. The federal government partners local enforcement agencies to deputize police this work under 287(g) program, establish in 1996.
ICE’s agreement are being executed by 69 law enforcement agencies in 24 states and Loss Angeles Sheriff’s Department. ICE’s record says that the program is succeeded to identify more than 21300 probable and deportable illegal immigrants since 2006. Most of them are detained in local jails.
According to the agency 1500 state and local officials were trained and certified under the program of ICE.
Immigrant right group criticized the program. They say it has led to disregard of civil right., racial profiling. In Arizona the authority has been controversial. Maricopa County Sheriff Joe Arpaio criticized it as mistreatment of suspected ellegal immigrant
This month justice department suspended the 287(g) agreement with Arpaio and his deputies.The suspension followed by an investigation of conducting campaign of racial profiling against Latinos, making unlawful arrests and disregarding civil rights to prevent illegal immigrants.
Besides, the Maricopa County jail officers' authority has been ended to keep people under custody and held immigration violators , who are not involved with local crime. It was done by U.S. Department of Homeland Security Secretary Janet Napolitano, a former governor of Arizona.
New hotline is “a positive development” but it was “overdue” and “inadequate” says
Thomas Saenz, president and general counsel of the Mexican American Legal Defense and Education Fund, based at the national Latino civil rights group’s Los Angeles headquarters. He said ,“Often people who are subject to ICE detainers have no idea why they are being held,” “This kind of step should have been in place the very first time ICE undertook an expansion of its detainers
Saez added that the detainees who are to make a call and follow up ,would be courageous, knowledgeable and financially solvent , otherwise they would feel frightened and would not be able to handle their case rightly.