287(g) at Odds with Nashville’s Reputation as a Welcoming and Inclusive City
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
August 21, 2012
CONTACT: Hedy Weinberg, ACLU-TN Executive Director, 615-320-7142
NASHVILLE – Sheriff Daron Hall announced today that he would not be renewing the Davidson County Sheriff’s Office’s controversial 287(g) agreement with Immigration and Customs Enforcement.
287(g) programs provide for the delegation of immigration enforcement authority in certain circumstances to specific local and state law enforcement agencies.
The American Civil Liberties Union of Tennessee and other immigrants’ rights advocates have raised serious concerns about Davidson County’s 287(g) program since it was first implemented in 2007. Opponents criticized the program for encouraging unfair treatment in the justice system for Nashville residents, racial profiling, and the separation of families. The program’s focus on deporting immigrants without due process for minor, often traffic-related offenses undermined public safety, leading to immigrants living in fear and distrust of law enforcement, reluctant to report crimes they experienced or witnessed.
The following can be attributed to Hedy Weinberg, Executive Director of the American Civil Liberties Union of Tennessee:
“Over the past five years, the 287(g) program has tarnished our community, deporting thousands of Nashvillians without due process. While we commend Sheriff Hall for recognizing that 287(g) is not right for Nashville, the lessons of 287(g)—encouragement of racial profiling, frequent deportations for misdemeanors, erosion of trust in law enforcement and the consequent undermining of public safety— must be considered when any other immigration enforcement program is implemented. We hope that this announcement marks the start of a new chapter in which all Nashville residents will be treated fairly regardless of race or ethnicity, in accordance with our reputation as a welcoming and inclusive city.”