The American Civil Liberties Union (ACLU) of Maryland filed suit in federal court in Baltimore under the Freedom of Information Act (FOIA) against the US Department of Homeland Security and Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) to ensure that local police departments that partner with ICE in anti-immigrant 287(g) agreements can be held accountable to the communities they serve. The lawsuit seeks full information about individuals who were held for further immigration screening, as well as policies and directives about how the Harford County Sheriff’s Office identified who they would target for screening.
287(g) is a program that gives a job meant for the federal government – immigration enforcement – to local law enforcement who receive little training and often use practices that amount to racial profiling. Three Maryland counties – Frederick, Anne Arundel and Harford County – are actively using local police agencies to target and cage immigrants for ICE as part of the federal 287(g) program. This is disturbing because 287(g) agreements undermine public safety, encourage racial profiling, and weaken families that make our state strong.