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Homeland Security Sets Deportations Record

WASHINGTON - This week, the Department of Homeland Security announced the department will, for the seventh consecutive year, set a record on deportations. Although the department heralds its accomplishment by touting its focus on the removal of criminal aliens, its numbers show only 16 percent of the projected 400,000 people deported were convicted of major crimes. And with the announced expansion of Secure Communities to every county by 2013, the number of deportations will surely continue to grow. The following is a statement by Gabe Gonzalez, political strategist at the Center for Community Change:

"This is a dark time in America. Comprehensive immigration reform is stalled and suffering in our communities has never been greater due to the deportation practices of the Obama Administration.

"The Obama Administration needs to face up to what it is doing. Don't tell the American public ICE is targeting criminals when only 16 percent of the people rounded up are Level 1 removals. The vast majority of the deportations involve people like
Saad Nabeel

, an 18-year-old University of Texas at Arlington student who was deported to Bangladesh in January.

"This level of human suffering will only grow exponentially if DHS continues to escalate enforcement and defer administrative immigration reforms. Immigrants shouldn't live in fear that a traffic stop could destroy their family through forced separation.

"This is not what the country needs. What we do need is a lasting, practical solution to our dysfunctional immigration system. What we do need is level-headed thinking and leadership in Congress to find a way forward from this moral crisis. But until Congress gets its act together, Obama and DHS Secretary Napolitano would serve the country well by stopping the indiscriminate, capricious deportations to end the needless suffering."

 


Since 1968, the Center for Community Change has strengthened the leadership, voice and power of low-income communities nationwide to confront the vital issues of today and build the social movements of tomorrow.



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