New Trump deportation policy expands law enforcement powers

Josh Kim
February 26, 2017

That does not mean this will happen, as there are roughly 11 million undocumented people living in the US, and there are not enough resources to deal with them all.

The memo recommends ICE agents should be granted greater powers to determine who should be deported and states that illegal immigrants are not eligible for rights under U.S. privacy laws. This includes those who entered without permission and those who overstayed a visa.

The memos also cement the broadened enforcement priorities that Trump outlined in his order. Both countries have historically worked closely to intercept Latin American migrants before they cross the border into the United States, but Mexico signalled that it may stop cooperating.

As U.S. administration officials meet with top Mexican officials in Mexico City, Trump's proposal to build a wall along the U.S. border with Mexico will be a topic of discussion.

Another related executive order from Trump, which imposed a temporary ban on immigrants and citizens of seven Middle Eastern countries, was scrapped after federal judges ruled against it. A federal appeals court has upheld a temporary halt.

Homeland Security officials said the plans will not lead to a mass roundup - but they are already getting a fierce backlash from immigration advocates in countries like Mexico. We have no objection to putting our resources into deporting those who do pose a threat to society, but millions of people who are in this country illegally are guilty of nothing more than trying to provide a better life for themselves and their families. For answers we turn to Camille Mackler, director of legal initiatives for the New York Immigration Coalition.

Kelly ordered immediate action to begin planning and building a wall along the U.S. southern border with Mexico.

Drafts of the memos had leaked in recent days, sparking feverish outcry from immigrant-rights groups who said they were a major step back in respecting illegal immigrants.

But the memos also detail measures that will greatly buttress the D.H.S.'s ability to arrest, detain and deport undocumented and criminal immigrants. Undocumented workers make up about 5 percent of the USA labor market.

"Taking the shackles off" means the USA will now deport immigrants for minor offenses, and remove some restrictions of due process.

One example involves broader use of a program that fast-tracks deportations.

The DHS have authority to apply expedited removal provisions to people who have not been admitted or paroled into the U.S., the people who are unacceptable and who have been not physically present in states for a longer period of more than two-year may be deported. Now, the Trump administration is planning to expand detention spaces, according to the memos.

It's possible, even likely, that the most abusive parts of the new program will run headlong into financial reality.

The American Civil Liberties Union said it would challenge the directives.

But if Trump differs from Obama on immigration policy, the difference is mostly one of degree. It broadens the categories of undocumented immigrants who will be targets and increases the number who can be deported without hearings.

These memos do not overturn President Obama's previous executive action on deferred action for childhood arrivals.

During the campaign Trump vowed to immediately end that program, which he described as illegal amnesty. Do not answer any questions, especially about your birth place, immigration status or how you entered the United States.

The language of the memo opens the door for more wide-scale deportation operations.

Under the Obama administration, more than 100,000 children, mostly from Honduras, El Salvador and Guatemala, were caught at the border.

The agency also plans to send non-Mexican migrants crossing the southern USA border back into Mexico as they await a decision on their case. Currently, two of every three applicants for Customs and Border Protection jobs fail polygraph exams and there are about 2,000 vacancies.

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