Imagine living with the fear that if you get pulled over for something as menial as a broken tail light, means you will be ripped away from your family and life to be deported from the United States.
That is what immigrants in Tarrant County are living with, on top of the stress that comes from not being an equal because of their birth place.
The 287g agreement between the Tarrant County Sheriff’s Office and Immigration Customs and Enforcement that was put in place in 2017 is another step backwards for the immigrant community.
The 287g agreement is a voluntary program a part of the Illegal Immigration Reform and Immigrant Responsibility Act of 1996 and it puts ICE trained officers inside local county jails.
This program is harmful to communities because it makes people afraid to have any involvement with police, which includes reporting crimes because of the risk of deportation.
It has been implemented and then flopped in counties across the country including Harris County in Texas all the way to Mecklenburg County in North Carolina.
It is placing the issue of immigration, which is reserved for the federal level, to be placed in the hands of officers that have power to discriminate.
Many citizens of Fort Worth have stepped up to fight against this program. The campaign is called ICE Out of Tarrant and is made up of over 30 members that have canvassed, held community meetings and started social media campaigns.
The group held their first protest in Arlington Monday, April 8 in response to Arlington Mayoral Candidate Ashton Stauffer inviting Joe Arpaio to speak at her restaurant.
Inviting people like Arpaio into our county is doing exactly what 287g is doing. It is telling our immigrant community that they don’t belong here, and they don’t matter.
ICE Out of Tarrant will not stop until the Tarrant County Commissioner’s vote to end this program which expires June 30th.
They are calling on Glen Whitley, Roy C. Brooks, Gary Fickes, and J.D. Johnson to say “NO!” to this racist program.
In order to make sure the leaders of Fort Worth know that 287g must go, people need to get involved and make their voices heard. Join the fight with ICE Out of Tarrant and contribute.
To get started, contact the group on Facebook at ICE Out of Tarrant or email firstname.lastname@example.org.
This program which is an open door for racism and discrimination does not belong in Tarrant County. Immigrants are an important asset to the community and need to be fought for.
Our immigrant community matters. Stand up and fight. 287g does not belong in Tarrant County.