On Monday the Obama administration issued a report saying that if the federal government wants to focus on rebuilding the trust between the police and the communities they serve then they should stop making use of local and state police in most immigration enforcement.
This recommendation came as part of President Obama’s policing task force, which was created following the riots that took place in Ferguson, Missouri last year. The aim was to come up with ways in which federal officials could help police officers to do their jobs, with other suggestions including the cessation of the transfer of heavy weapons and tank-like vehicles to local and state authorities and the decoupling of immigration enforcement from the local police.
“The US Department of Homeland Security should terminate the use of the state and local criminal justice system, including through detention, notification and transfer requests, to enforce civil immigration laws against civil and non-serious criminal offenders,” the report from the task force says.Supporters of a crackdown on illegal immigration were furious at the report, with Numbers USA government relations manager Rosemary Jenks saying that those immigrants concerned about their legal status should not be doing anything that would make it likely for them to be questioned by police.
The president discussed the report during his visit to New Jersey, focusing primarily on the use of military equipment by police in the riots last year and growing concerns that there is an increasing divide between communities and police.