Monday, January 2, 2012
New Immigration Enforcement Measures
SAN DIEGO Last month, four U.S. citizens were detained in Los Angeles for shoplifting and other minor crimes. They were then held by immigration authorities as they considered whether or not they should be deported.
The case brought on a renewed wave of criticism over immigration enforcement programs, like Secure Communities. The program targets non-U.S. citizens who are victims of crimes for deportation. But, many times, U.S. citizens get ensnared in the process.
So in an effort to avoid future mistakes, Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) has announced a new, toll-free detainee hotline that informs people of their rights.
The agency has also introduced a new detainer form, meant to avoid having detainees held for a period longer than 48 hours as they wait to hear about their deportation status.
ICE officials said they will continue to focus on threats to public safety, repeat immigration law violators, and recent illegal border crossers.
The new service, in English and Spanish, will be available to U.S. citizens or victims of a crime who should not be deported.
The toll-free hotline number is (855) 448-6903.