ICE Secure Communities Removals Falling
(13 Aug 2019) Recently released Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) removal-by-removal records on Secure Communities (SC) reveal that the number of SC deportations has been trending downward during the past year. As of April 2019 - the latest data available - the monthly number of SC removals had fallen to 6,152. This is down from 7,456 in May of 2018. These latest results are based upon ICE records recently obtained and analyzed by the Transactional Records Access Clearinghouse (TRAC) at Syracuse University.

Since President Trump assumed office, the Secure Communities program has been promoted as essential to implement this administration's agenda for ramped up deportations. Different communities have adopted different policies regarding cooperation with immigration enforcement officials. Resistance to cooperating with ICE is reflected in a growing number of jurisdictions that have enacted so-called "sanctuary" laws. In contrast, other communities have adopted policies that support immigration enforcement.

California and Texas with the largest estimated populations of undocumented immigrants in the country are emblematic of these two opposite paths. As a result, California and Texas present a picture of contrasts in SC removal trends. At one time California had the highest number of SC removals compared to any state in the country, but has shown a precipitous decline since then, hitting a low point of just 675 in February of 2015. While Texas never reached the heights that California had in SC removals, it has experienced much less change under both presidential administrations. For the last year or more, SC removals have been fairly level at about 2,000 per month, slightly lower than the peak reached in the Obama years.

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