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Press Statement on Illinois S-Comm Termination by New York State Working Group Against Deportation

May 6, 2011

May 6, 2011
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE

Contact:
Michelle Fei, Immigrant Defense Project, mfei@immigrantdefenseproject.org, (484) 466-6334
Mizue Aizeki, Northern Manhattan Coalition for Immigrant Rights, maizeki@nmcir.org, (914) 471-2775
Ravi Ragbir, New Sanctuary Coalition, rrchanges@gmail.com, (917) 566-4816

Press Statement on Illinois S-Comm Termination by New York State Working Group Against Deportation

The New York State Working Group Against Deportation commends Illinois for withdrawing from ICE’s much-maligned “Secure Communities” program. New York must immediately take Illinois’ lead to protect immigrants by likewise terminating its S-Comm agreement. By stopping further activation of New York counties and deactivating participating counties, Governor Cuomo can help build immigrants’ trust in the police, protect due process rights, and save our State from facing substantial liabilities.

Governor Cuomo must take advantage of this critical opportunity to undo some of the damage done by allowing S-Comm to now blanket more than one-third of its counties. This mass deportation program, which forces police to send all fingerprints taken during booking to immigration databases, tagged nearly 3,500 immigrants for deportation in January and February alone. There is no time to waste. As a state that is proud of its tradition of upholding and protecting civil, immigrant, and human rights, New York must immediate stop S-Comm.

Through the Working Group, over 80 organizations, 130 faith leaders, and 40 elected officials have joined together to urge Governor Cuomo terminate New York’s S-Comm agreement with ICE. We look forward to partnering with him in the upcoming days and weeks to take this firm step to protect our communities.

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The New York State Working Group Against Deportation is a broad coalition of domestic violence, immigrant rights, family services, labor, faith-based, civil rights, and community-based organizations that aims to stop Secure Communities and other deportation programs. For more information, please contact Michelle Fei, Immigrant Defense Project, at mfei@immigrantdefenseproject.org or Mizue Aizeki, Northern Manhattan Coalition for Immigrant Rights at maizeki@nmcir.org.

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