ICE would be monitoring personal information of DACA beneficiaries
Pending a U.S. Supreme Court ruling that will determine the future of the Dreamers, immigration, and customs agencies are tracking undocumented immigrants.
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For the Trump Administration, no time is more ideal to harass vulnerable communities than when the country is going through a crisis.
That seems to have been understood by Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE), which has taken advantage of the chaos orchestrated by the government to secretly obtain the personal information of young undocumented immigrants who arrived in the country as children, better known as Dreamers.
According to ProPublica, and despite President Trump's promises that information from applications to the Deferred Action Program (DACA) would not be shared with deportation agents, a series of internal agency e-mails "show that ICE can access the databases where that information is kept, and the Department of Homeland Security (DHS) decided not to tell Congress.”
Although the promise was originally made by the Obama administration when it inaugurated the program eight years ago, the Trump Administration's decision to close DACA –along with its pursuit of anti-immigrant policies– has given immigration agencies greater scope.
Thanks to a series of internal administration emails obtained by the Make the Road New York organization through a Freedom of Information Act lawsuit, ProPublica has reported how the Trump government has concealed its agencies' access to databases with detailed information on Dreamers around the country.
This includes home addresses of both beneficiaries and "millions of other immigrants.”
"ICE already has the information," wrote Gene Hamilton, an official with the Department of Homeland Security, in an internal e-mail shortly before Trump's September 2017 announcement. (Hamilton is now at the Department of Justice.) "There is no way to take that back."
ProPublica also explains how, during the agency's hearings before the Senate Judiciary Committee, DHS staff decided not to give details about their access to the electronic systems used by the U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS), the agency that runs DACA.