The City of Las Vegas jail is ending its 287(g) agreement with U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement a day after Las Vegas Metropolitan Police Department announced it would be suspending its involvement.
“Our city attorney has determined that we will also suspend our 287(g) agreement with ICE and will not detain inmates on federal immigration holds due to a California court ruling. We’d like to remind the public that our city jail is for misdemeanors only,” the city tweeted out Thursday.
Immigration and civil rights’ groups like Arriba Las Vegas Workers Center, Make the Road Nevada, ACLU of Nevada, Mi Familia Vota and Progressive Leadership Alliance of Nevada have been fighting to end the controversial program noting that incidents of low-level offenses like speeding or driving without a license often led to deportation.
“The decision to end 287(g) means that a simple traffic ticket will no longer result in deportation and separation of families,” said Cecia Alvarado, the Nevada State Director of Mi Familia Vota.
Clark County Sheriff Joe Lombardo added on Wednesday that “LVMPD will continue to work with ICE at the Clark County Detention Center in removing persons without legal status who have committed violent crimes.”
“Sheriff Lombardo’s statement regarding LVMPD’s ability to fight violent crime despite the suspension of the 287(g) program, once again proves that the program was never needed by LVMPD to protect and serve our community,” said LaLo Montoya, the political director of Make the Road Nevada “For over a decade, the unconstitutional detention program resulted in the erosion of trust with our local police department as ICE unlawfully targeted our immigrant community.”
The issue has attracted the interest of local presidential candidates, which is not the first time candidates have weighed in on local matters.
While applauding the work of local activists for pushing law enforcement to end their cooperation, former U.S. Housing and Urban Development secretary Julián Castro also reiterated his support for a “nationwide end to 287(g) agreements.”
I’ve called for a nationwide end to 287g agreements in my People First Immigration Plan. https://t.co/VgBbkOKnXH
— Julián Castro (@JulianCastro) October 24, 2019
U.S. Sen. Kamala Harris also tweeted out support for law enforcement ending the involvement saying “using local officers as immigration authorities erodes trust between law enforcement and those they serve.”
I applaud @LVMPD's decision to suspend deputizing officers as ICE agents. Using local officers as immigration authorities erodes trust between law enforcement and those they serve. As president, I'll end this program and fight for a fair and just immigration system. https://t.co/5XNqisaGqs
— Kamala Harris (@KamalaHarris) October 24, 2019
On Friday afternoon, South Bend Mayor Pete Buttigieg also tweeted out support for the program ending.
In South Bend, we refused to make officers double as ICE agents because it reduces trust, makes communities less safe, and it's just plain wrong. I applaud the @LVMPD for ending its 287-G agreement, and as president, I’ll end the program altogether. https://t.co/NPivNii2iz
— Pete Buttigieg (@PeteButtigieg) October 25, 2019