Petition Closed
Petitioning New York Governor

Ask Gov. Cuomo to Withdraw from “Secure Communities”

New York State Immigrant Action Fund

Police, elected officials, and religious leaders all agree. New York must withdraw from “Secure Communities” which turns local law enforcement into an arm of ICE. Please add your voice to the chorus asking Gov. Cuomo to protect us all by separating our police from immigration enforcement.

Keeping New York safe depends on building trust between police and immigrant communities. Immigrants, like all of us, are the eyes and ears of the police. Recognizing this, many of our police departments have done groundbreaking work in improving cooperation with newcomers, making all of New York more secure against violent criminals. When New York joined ICE’s “Secure Communities” program, that progress began to unravel.

Secure Communities requires that local police in New York State run the fingerprints of all arrestees through an ICE database that tags immigrants for deportation. Nationally, the majority of those deported under Secure Communities are immigrants who have never been convicted of any serious crime. While New York was assured by the Department of Homeland Security that police departments could opt-out of Secure Communities, ICE now insists that as long as the state is a participant, all police in our state must share immigrants’ fingerprints with ICE.

Immigrants now rightly perceive the police who are sworn to protect them have been enlisted by ICE as immigration enforcement agents. They worry that police in counties like Suffolk and Putnam with a history of racial profiling are arresting immigrants on slight pretexts to remove immigrants from certain communities. “Secure Communities” is building a wall of mistrust between law enforcement and newcomers.

We don’t want New York to become the next Arizona!

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