City officials discuss New Orleans compliance on federal immigration law
City officials discuss New Orleans compliance on federal immigration law
U.S. Attorney General Jeff Sessions
14 October, 2017, 00:55
The Justice Department on Thursday issued a statement saying New Orleans, Chicago, New York and Philadelphia have until October 27 to show they are complying with longstanding federal law that says cities can't hinder information sharing with immigration agents.
The U.S. Department of Justice, in separate letters to Chicago Police Department Superintendent Eddie Johnson and Cook County Board President Toni Preckwinkle penned Wednesday, highlights several active policies created to shield undocumented immigrants from being unduly targeted by law enforcement entities.
The DOJ says that Chicago, IL; New Orleans, LA; New York, NY; Philadelphia, PA and Cook County, IL have failed to comply with a section of the law that prohibits government entities from impeding immigration agents.
A Thursday Justice Department statement names Chicago, New York, Philadelphia and New Orleans.
This is a developing story.
U.S. Attorney General Jeff Sessions said in a statement that these cities "adopt the view that the protection of criminal aliens is more important than the protection of law-abiding citizens and of the rule of law".
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Two other jurisdictions, the state of CT and Milwaukee County, Wis., heeded Justice Department warnings and reversed policies meant to shield undocumented immigrants from possible deportation. NY banked $4.3 million from the program, the Edward Byrne Memorial Justice Assistance Grant, in 2016.
"This is about making every member of this community feel safe because they have access to police, police services and they are willing and able to report crimes when they are either victims or witnesses to those crimes", Harrison said. The assessment is its latest effort to force "sanctuary cities" to comply with federal immigration orders. "As such, we continue to state unambiguously that Chapter 41.6.1 does not restrict officers and employees from requesting information regarding immigration status from federal immigration officers".
Several jurisdictions have filed suit against the federal government arguing such orders violate the 10th Amendment by compelling states to enforce federal immigration laws.
Although city officials stop short of calling New Orleans a "sanctuary city", New Orleans has been included on a list of such jurisdictions because of its policy towards Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE).
"While I firmly believe the city complies with federal laws, the city's position for some time has been that the Attorney General has overstepped his authority in even requiring us to comply with 8 U.S.C Section 1373 as a condition of a grant that has nothing to do with immigration enforcement", said Kenney during the press conference.
A Chicago federal judge last month imposed a preliminary injunction blocking the Trump administration from tying grants to two new conditions.
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