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August 23, 2011

OneAmerica Joins National Immigration Experts to Discuss Impact of "Secure Communities" on Public Safety

New Report Documents Incidents from Across the Country, Damage Done to Community Policing

Press Call: Wednesday, August 24th at 1 pm Eastern /10 am Pacific
Call in: 1-800-862-9098; Passcode: S-COMM

On Wednesday August 24th at 10am Pacific, local and national immigration experts will discuss the impact that certain federal-local deportation programs are having on community policing and public safety in a conference call with reporters. During the call, America’s Voice Education Fund (AVEF) will release a new report, “Public Safety on ICE: How Do You Police a Community That Won’t Talk to You?” which uses examples from across the country, including Washington State, to document the chilling effect that police-DHS collaboration has on immigrant crime victims and witnesses, and describes how programs like "Secure Communities" (S-Comm) actually make all of us less safe.

Nineteen Washington counties have expressed interest in joining "Secure Communities," despite the federal program coming under attack in recent months by law enforcement, elected officials, and advocates for crime victims and immigrants. Despite its stated goal of focusing on serious criminals, the program has led to the deportation of thousands of innocent people, and is destroying the relationship between police and the immigrant community. 

Also on Wednesday, the "Secure Communities" task force will hold the last in a series of field hearings in Arlington, VA, where community members will raise concerns about the program and the damage it is having on the relationship between police and immigrants. The task force is a non-governmental group appointed by DHS to review this controversial program and make recommendations. 
 
WHAT:  Local and National Experts Discuss Fear of Police in Immigrant Communities Because of S-Comm and Other Programs

WHO:  Alexsa Alonso, Associate Director of Advocacy, American Immigration Lawyers Association
Marisa Vertrees, Social Justice Coordinator, St. Charles Borromeo Catholic Church, Arlington, VA
Ada Williams Prince, Policy Director, OneAmerica, Seattle, WA
Lynn Tramonte, Deputy Director, America’s Voice (moderator)

WHEN:  Wednesday, August 24, 1pm Eastern / 10am Pacific
 
HOW:  Call in: 800-862-9098; Passcode: S-COMM

TWEET: OneAmerica will livetweet select parts of the call, using the hashtag #SComm. If you're on Twitter too, please use this hashtag and, if you can, tag @weareoneamerica and @americasvoice.

Media

For questions or to request an embargoed copy of the America’s Voice Education Fund report, “Public Safety on ICE: How Do You Police a Community That Won’t Talk to You?”, contact Charlie McAteer, OneAmerica Communications Director, 206-452-8402, charlie@weareoneamerica.org

About OneAmerica

OneAmerica, formerly Hate Free Zone, is a 501(c)(3) non-profit organization that advances the fundamental principles of democracy and justice by building power within immigrant communities.

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