Wednesday, July 30, 2008
ICE given two options to undocumented Immigrants: Jail o deportation.!!!!!!! We should deport Lou Dobbs.!!!!!!!!
Rather than risk getting caught, turn yourselves in. This is what we called Justice?
That’s the latest strategy in the government’s ongoing effort to dramatically reduce the nation’s ballooning population of unauthorized immigrants.
Scheduled to be unveiled next week, it was announced Sunday by Julie Myers, director of U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement, in an interview with a Spanish-language television network.
Myers told the network that Operation Scheduled Departure will allow unauthorized immigrants without criminal records a chance to literally “self-deport” by turning themselves in to her agents.
She said the idea derived from a common complaint voiced by immigrant detainees: If given the opportunity, they’d rather just go home than be holed up in immigration prisons.
Under the new program, those who haven’t been arrested will have the chance to walk into ICE offices, be processed and get a few weeks to arrange their affairs, pack their belongings and ship out of the country without being detained.
“The program basically gives an opportunity to those seeking an organized way to self-deport,” Myers told Univisión anchor Jorge Ramos.
Myers said the program would allow immigrants to avoid the increasing risks of being picked up in a raid at home or at work but would offer no additional incentives for them to turn themselves in — no chance at qualifying for an amnesty, for example.
ICE officials in San Antonio, Dallas and Washington refused to elaborate on the program, saying no details will be made available before the official presentation next week.
Immigrant advocates called the program a laughable charade with little to no chance of succeeding without any carrots to offer self-deportees.
“It’s pure fantasy,” said Doug Rivlin, spokesman for the National Immigration Forum in Washington. “An attempt to entice people to sign away their rights and get out of the country as quickly as possible before even talking to a lawyer.”
If people wanted to leave on their own, they’d buy their own bus or plane ticket home without checking in with ICE first, Rivlin said.
Ira Mehlman, spokesman for the Federation for American Immigration Reform, the country’s largest anti-unauthorized-immigration lobby group, based in Washington, said he’d have to concede that point.
The government would have to come up with some kind of incentive to entice immigrants to sign up, such as telling them that by leaving voluntarily they would be allowed to apply to come back legally, Mehlman said.
The concept of nudging unauthorized immigrants into leaving on their own is one his group has long advocated.
“It certainly makes sense to create conditions to make people understand that if they’re here illegally, it’s not going to benefit them to stick around,” he said.
While it remains to be seen whether the idea works for ICE, another federal agency that first came up with the idea three years ago claims it has worked well.
Fugitive Safe Surrender offers nonviolent criminals with arrest warrants a chance to give themselves up to the U.S. Marshals Service instead of being hunted down. So far, more than 16,000 have accepted the offer