Wednesday, February 10, 2016
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MIRA advocates for the rights and opportunities of immigrants and refugees. In partnership with its members, MIRA advances this mission through policy analysis and advocacy, institutional organizing, training and leadership development, and strategic communications.

Immigrant Advocates Thank Governor Patrick for Rejecting “Secure Communities”

On Monday, Governor Patrick announced that he would not sign Massachusetts onto the “Secure Communities” immigration enforcement program.

This controversial federal program sends the fingerprints of anyone arrested by police to an Immigrations and Customs Enforcement (ICE) database, allowing ICE to match prints of those marked for deportation.

The intent of the program is to deport dangerous criminals, but ICE’s own data shows that mostly low-level and non-criminal offenders have been deported.  The federal government wants “Secure Communities” to be implemented at every police force in the nation by 2013.

Governor Patrick is the third governor to reject the program, recognizing the concerns of human rights groups, faith-based organizations, the editorial boards of newspapers, and advocates for domestic violence victims.  They have all disagreed with “Secure Communities” for putting into jeopardy the trust between local law enforcement and immigrant communities.

Additionally, ICE has come under internal investigation for overstepping its boundaries, among other flaws.

MIRA is very happy that the Governor has decided not to sign onto “Secure Communities”!  We think his decision truly guarantees the security of our immigrant communities and all others.

If you want to learn more about “Secure Communities”, check out this article by the New York Times.

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