President Donald Trump’s continued assault on immigration has led to the implementation of ‘deportation forces’ across the country. These units have attempted to draft local law enforcement officials from every state, including Hawaii.
To combat this, the American Civil Liberties Union of Hawaii (ACLU) has sent letters to officials in every Hawaii county, warning of the consequences these deportation forces create.
“We ask that the County of Maui not become an accomplice to the Trump Administration’s agenda of division and fear,” states the ACLU’s Mar. 23 letter, which was sent to Mayor Alan Arakawa, Council Chair Mike White, Corporation Counsel Patrick Wong and Police Chief Tivoli Faaumu. “We also offer our support in efforts to resist the pressure from the Trump Administration, and assistance where the County of Maui may seek to refine its policies and practices in this area.”
The letter focused on two primary concerns: Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) detainers, which have asked local law enforcement to detain people for an additional 48 hours, without legal authority or probable cause, and participation in the 287(g) program; a program which allows the federal government to deputize local police as ICE agents, without the necessary training.
Both these polices are voluntary, though it’s not hard to see how they could be used in malicious ways.
“People across the country are urging local governments to stand up to Trump’s dangerous immigration agenda, which seeks to indiscriminately tear communities and families apart,” said ACLU Hawaii Legal Director Mateo Caballero said in the press release.
County Communications Director Rod Antone didn’t respond to our request for comment on the ACLU letter.
Click here to read the ACLU Hawaii’s letter to the County of Maui.
Photo courtesy ICE