End 287(g) now

Saturday April 1, 2023

Section 287(g) of the U.S. Immigration and Nationality Act authorizes the Department of Homeland Security to deputize selected state and local law enforcement officers to enforce federal immigration law. The 287(g) program served as a cornerstone of the previous administration’s anti-immigrant agenda, with the former administration recruiting dozens of anti-immigrant sheriffs and growing the program by 500 percent.

The US Justice Department has documented large-scale constitutional violations in localities participating in the 287(g) program, including racial profiling of BIPOC immigrant community members and the unlawful arrest and detention of Latinos. A 2009 study by the University of North Carolina School of Law and the American Civil Liberties Union of North Carolina (ACLU-NC) found that “287(g) encourages, or at the very least tolerates, racial profiling and baseless stereotyping, resulting in the harassment of local residents and the isolation of an increasingly marginalized community.”

Additionally, local law enforcement executives have repeatedly stated that enforcement of federal immigration law damages the relationship between local law enforcement and the Latino community. Local police agencies depend on the cooperation of immigrants in solving all sorts of crimes. Without assurances that they will not be subject to an immigration investigation and possible deportation, many immigrants with critical information cannot risk coming forward, even when heinous crimes are committed against them or their families.

In 2019, the Major Cities Chiefs Association, a group of police chiefs from the 78 largest police departments in the United States and Canada, found that “without assurances that contact with the police would not result in purely civil immigration enforcement action, the hard-won trust, communication and cooperation from the immigrant community would disappear.”

The current administration promised to terminate all 287(g) agreements entered into under the previous administration.

When state and local law enforcement agents act as federal immigration agents, the president said, they “undermine trust and cooperation between local law enforcement and the communities they are charged to protect.”

Please join 60 members of Congress, 25 faith-based organizations, over 160 immigration and civil rights groups, and a group of 120 law enforcement professionals from around the country in urging the administration to terminate 287(g) agreements now. You can email your comments to:  The Honorable Alejandro Mayorkas, Secretary of Homeland Security.

Skip to content