President Obama’s Secure Communities program was allegedly implemented to target dangerous criminals and deport those who were here illegally. Recently, more information regarding who is being deported under the federal program shows that many undocumented immigrants with no previous criminal history are being targeted and deported. Because Immigration and Customs Enforcement has limited resources, it is most beneficial to target criminals that make the nation unsafe rather than separating families.
Maria Carmen’s family was torn apart after her husband was arrested and deported shortly after being pulled over during a routine traffic stop. With no criminal history of any sort, law enforcement still recognized that Carmen resided in the U.S. illegally and federal agents loaded him onto a chartered plan and sent him back to his native Ecuador. Analysis by The Baltimore Sun shows that “20 percent of immigrants deported nationwide under the program have no record…” and these numbers are even higher in Border States.
President Obama has openly acknowledged that sometimes innocent undocumented immigrants do get caught up in the Secure Communities program, but the majority of those targeted are violent offenders and not “…folks who are just looking to scrape together an income.”
ICE has responded to allegations that officials are targeting certain immigrants by saying that this is a new program and they have not had enough time to draw any conclusions. They claim to understand the government is pressing them to focus on convicted criminals and that is what they are doing. However, no explanation can provide solace to Carmen who has a six-year-old daughter to care for herself now. “I don’t even know how to tell her about the situation — about how she’s not going to have a dad. I just hope to God he can come back.”
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