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Cosmetic reforms to “Secure Communities” more spin than substance; Struggle continues to keep deportation program out of MN

June 21, 2011

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Minnesota Immigrant Rights Action Committee (MIRAc)

651-389-9174 | |
For Immediate Release
June 21, 2011

Cosmetic Reforms to “Secure Communities” Deportation Program More Spin than Substance
Local immigrant rights activists continue campaign to keep deportation program out of Minnesota

Minneapolis, MN – In response to mounting criticism, on June 17 the Obama Administration announced reforms to the “Secure Communities” (S-COMM) jail deportation program. The S-Comm “reform” announcement acknowledges grave problems in S-Comm’s design and implementation, but it falls short of the moratorium on the program expected by law makers and immigrant rights advocates.

Adding to the fallout, llinois, New York, and Massachusetts and many cities across the country have either withdrawn or refused participation in the program that they say catches too many noncriminals and undermines public safety by making crime witnesses and victims fear the police. The program commandeers local law enforcement and entangles them in federal immigration policy.

As a result, the Congressional Hispanic Caucus and Progressive Caucus have both called for a moratorium on the program pending an investigation by the Office of the Inspector General called for by Rep. Lofgren (D-CA) slated to begin next month.

Despite the mounting criticisms of the program around the country, Minnesota Sen. Julianne Ortman (R-Chanhassen) attempted to sneak Secure Communities through the Minnesota State Legislature at the end of the legislative session without discussion. It was tagged on to an amendment of the omnibus data practices bill in a conference committee in mid May. Without transparency, and without a open public debate, Senate lawmakers unanimously approved the bill the same day.

Minnesota Immigrant Rights Action Committee (MIRAc) and other local human rights advocates called for Gov. Dayton to veto SF1143, the data practices bill, but just before the end of the session Secure Communities was transferred into SF958, a public safety bill. Although Gov. Dayton did the right thing by vetoing SF958, in his letter explaining that veto, he didn’t name “Secure Communities” as one of the reasons he vetoed it.

“We need to make sure that Gov. Dayton doesn’t allow Secure Communities to come back to life in the special session” said Niger of MIRAc’s No More Deportations campaign. “The state’s budget problems will not be solved by deporting immigrants and splitting up Minnesota families.”

Isaac Martín of MIRAc’s No More Deportations campaign, points out that this would also restrict immigrant communities from reporting crimes. “There should be an elimination of S-Comm, and similar policies. Minnesota Public safety will be at risk if the state is forced to participate in this clearly flawed program. The immigrant population in this state will feel terrorized by local law enforcement if there is a threat of removal from this country, especially if there’s no notification of detention to loved ones.”

MIRAc, the Minnesota Immigrant Rights Action Committee, is an organization that works with the immigrant community and their allies towards the goal of human rights, legalization for all, and equality and justice for immigrants. The No More Deportations campaign was initiated by MIRAc in November 2010. The campaign seeks to prevent the “Secure Communities” program from being implemented in Minnesota, and seeks to remove the “Criminal Alien Program” from Minnesota. These two programs are largely responsible for the sharp increase in deportations in recent years.

Background information on the Secure Communities program is available at



El Comite Por Los Derechos de Los Inmigrantes (MIRAc)

651-389-9174 | |

Para su publicación inmediata
21 de Junio 2010

Reformas Cosméticas al Programa “Comunidades Seguras”:
Este Programa de Deportación da mas vueltas que solución y seguirá criminalizando  a la comunidad inmigrante

Activistas pro-inmigrantes locales continúan la  campana para mantener el programa de Comunidades Seguras fuera de Minnesota.

Minneapolis, MN –  En respuesta a la avalancha de criticas en contra de este programa, el 17 de Junio la administración de Obama anuncio reformas a este programa de  “Comunidades Seguras” (S-COMM) que es un programa de deportación. La reforma al programa de Comunidades Seguras, reconoce los graves problemas que se están cometiendo, pero no llama a una moratoria o suspension temporal de dicho programa que la comunidad y luchadores por los derechos de los Inmigrantes esperaban.

Anidiendo a esta situación, llinois, New York, y Massachusetts  y muchas otras ciudades y estados a lo largo y ancho del país han suspendido su participación  o han rechazado toda participación en este programa argumentando que este programa esta deportando personas que no han cometido un crimen, como también subestima la seguridad publica forzando a las victimas a no reportar crímenes a la policía por temor a ser deportados.  Este programa forza a las autoridades locales a ejercer leyes federales como lo es la de inmigración.

Como resultado la Junta Política de los Hispanos y la Junta Progresista ambos han llamado a que se ponga una moratoria a este programa hasta que se haga la investigación pendiente por el Inspector General  llamada por el  Rep. Lofgren (D-CA)  que esta prevista inicial el próximo mes.

A pesar de la avalancha de criticas alrededor del país hacia este programa, la senadora de Minnesota  Julianne Ortman (Republicana-Chanhassen)  ha atentado introducir silenciosamente el Programa de Comunidades Seguras en la legislatura del Estado de Minnesota, al final de la sesión legislativa sin un debate previo. Esta enmienda fue hecha a la propuesta de ley Practica de Datos, en una conferencia de comité  a mediados de Mayo, sin ninguna transparencia y sin ningún debate publico, y fue aprobada el mismo día.

El comite por los derechos de los Inmigrantes (Mirac) y otros activistas por los derechos de los inmigrantes llamaron al Gobernador Dayton a que vetara esta ley de Practica de Datos conocida como SF1143. Antes del final de la sesion el programa de Comunidades Seguras fue trasladado a la ley SF958,  el cual era una Propuesta de ley de Seguridad Publica. A pesar de que el Gobernador Dayton hizo lo correcto vetando este proyecto de ley, en su carta en la cual explica las razones de vetar estas propuestas de ley nunca menciona que el programa de Comunidades Seguras fue una razon para vetar la ley.

“Nosotros necesitamos asegurar que el Gobernador Dayton no permita que el programa de Comunidades Seguras regrese en la sesion especial” dice Niger, miembro de Mirac y de la Campana de No Mas Deportaciones. “El presupuesto del estado no se podrá resolver deportando a los inmigrantes ni separando familias en Minnesota”.

Isaac Martín de La Campana no Mas Deportaciones que Mirac esta llevando acabo expreso “El Programa de Comunidades Seguras debería ser eliminado como también toda ley o política anti-inmigrante. La seguridad publica en Minnesota estaría en un verdadero peligro si el estado decide participar en este programa. La población inmigrante en este estado estaría siendo aterrorizada por las autoridades locales, si este programa es implementado en Minnesota”

MIRAc, El Comité por los derechos de los Inmigrantes, es una organizacion que  trabaja en la comunidad inmigrante y  con sus aliados con la meta de una legalizacion para todos, igualdad y justicia para los inmigrantes. La Campana de No Mas Deportaciones fue iniciada por Mirac en Noviembre del 2010, esta campana tiene como objetivo prevenir que el programa de Comunidades Seguras sea inplementado en Minnesota, como tambien remover el Programa de Criminales Extranjeros del condado de Hennepin. Estos dos programas son los responsables que los niveles de deportaciones se han incrementado en los anos recientes.

Mas información sobre el programa Comunidades Seguras:

June 3: Call-in day to Gov. Dayton: Stand firm against “Secure Communities” deportation program during the special session!

June 3, 2011

Call-in day to Gov. Dayton on Friday, June 3rd:
Tell Gov. Dayton: No More Deportations in Minnesota — Stand firm against “Secure Communities” deportation program during the special session!

On Friday, June 3 we’re asking all supporters of immigrant rights and basic human rights to call Gov. Dayton at 651-201-3400 o 800-657-3717 and tell him:

Governor Dayton:

1. Thank you for vetoing the bill that included the “Secure Communities” deportation program (SF958) at the end of the legislative session.

2. We are asking you to veto any bill in the upcoming special session that includes “Secure Communities” deportation program, or any other program that would increase deportations and tear apart families in Minnesota.

(If you call, please email and let us know what response you get.)

Why Call Now?

We need our voices to be heard now so that Gov. Dayton knows he needs to stand firm and refuse to sign any bill that includes “Secure Communities” deportation program during the upcoming legislative special session. The date of the special session hasn’t been set yet, but it will happen sometime before July 1st. Please call Gov. Dayton on Friday, June 3rd to keep the pressure on until the special session!


Over the last few years, deportations that cruelly separate many thousands of families have increased around the country to levels not seen even under the Bush administration. “Secure Communities” is a poorly-named program that is responsible for a large part of this increase in deportations. It connects booking information from local jails to a federal database used by both ICE and the FBI, making many communities less secure. (more background on Secure Communities) There are already too many deportations happening in Minnesota — if Secure Communities is implemented here, we will see a dramatic increase in deportations and separation of families. This must be stopped.

The claim is that Secure Communities focuses on deporting “criminals”. But over 70% of the people deported under Secure Communities have not been convicted of any crime or have only been convicted of traffic-related offenses. Illinois is currently trying to get out of Secure Communities, New York announced they’re withdrawing, and California’s Assembly just voted to allow it’s counties to opt out if they want to. The Congressional Hispanic Caucus has come out against it as well as many other congresspeople. Immigrant workers, their families and communities want Secure Communities to end, as they are bearing the brunt of this program through the cruel separation of families on a massive scale. The tide is turning against this program.

Sneaking Secure Communities in to Minnesota?

Minnesota has not joined the “Secure Communities” program yet. But about a week before the Minnesota legislative session ended, Sen. Ortman (R) snuck the deportation program into SF1143, an omnibus bill, with no debate, discussion or committee hearings. Then just before the end of the session Secure Communities was transferred into SF958, the Public Safety bill, which the legislature passed just before the session ended on May 23.  However, on May 24, Governor Dayton vetoed SF958.

Can Secure Communities come back from the dead?

Since he vetoed all the budget bills, now Gov. Dayton will need to call a Special Session of the legislature sometime before July 1st to pass new budget bills. During a special session, legislators can bring anything back into play.  So even though Gov. Dayton vetoed the bill that included Secure Communities, it could potentially be brought back from the dead in a special session.  If the legislature attaches it to another bill and passes it again, Gov. Dayton will have to veto it again or else it becomes law.

Clearly many members of the state legislature as well as the Obama administration’s Department of Homeland Security are pressuring Gov. Dayton to bring Secure Communities to Minnesota. We need to keep the pressure on Gov. Dayton to stand strong against the “Secure Communities” deportation program when the legislature comes back into special session. Back-room deals are usually made between the governor and legislators in the lead-up to a special session. We need our voices to be heard now so that Gov. Dayton knows he needs to stand firm and refuse to sign any bill that includes “Secure Communities” deportation program during the special session.

Gov. Dayton did the right thing by vetoing SF958. But in hisletter explaining that veto, he doesn’t name “Secure Communities” as one of the reasons he vetoed it.  We need to make sure that he doesn’t allow Secure Communities to come back to life in the special session.

Call Gov. Dayton on Friday, June 3 and tell him:
No more deportations in Minnesota! Say NO to “Secure Communities”!

No More Deportations campaign
website |facebook | 651-389-9174
Join us for our next No More Deportations campaign meeting: Saturday, June 4 – 1:00 pm – Walker Church (31st St & 16th Ave, Minneapolis)


MIRAc letter to Gov. Dayton: Veto “Secure Communities” deportation program!

May 23, 2011

Members of MIRAc and the No More Deportations campaign delivered this letter to Gov. Dayton’s office on Friday, May 20th.

May 20, 2011

Governor Dayton,

We are here today representing the Minnesota Immigrant Rights Action Committee (MIRAc) and the No More Deportations Campaign. We were extremely concerned to hear that earlier this week an agreement to implement the Secure Communities program here in Minnesota had been introduced by Senator Ortman and attached as an amendment to the Omnibus Data Practices bill, SF 1143, passing unanimously and without a public hearing.

As you may already know, Secure Communities (S-Comm) is a fingerprint database that is used to check the immigration status of those who are arrested. Immigration Control and Enforcement (ICE) claims that Secure Communities will work to deport “dangerous criminals” and reduce racial profiling, and wants to implement it nationwide by 2013.

However, the statistics paint a very different picture. Since the implementation of Secure Communities in 2008, 79% of those deported through the program had either been convicted of petty offenses (such as traffic violations), or had committed no crime at all. 28% of people deported through S-Comm since its implementation have not been convicted of any crime at all, and that number is on the rise. The state of Illinois recently pulled out of the Secure Communities program, and Governor Pat Quinn stated in a letter to ICE “that the implementation of the Secure Communities program in Illinois is contrary to the stated purpose of the MOA… By ICE’s own measure, less than 20% of those who have been deported from Illinois under the program have ever been convicted of a serious crime.”

Secure Communities causes many other problems as well, including:

  • destroys families and communities by increasing deportations
  • increases racial profiling among local law enforcement
  • is part of an unjust national immigration system
  • does not allow due process
  • makes communities more mistrustful of police
  • increases financial and resource burdens on local law enforcement
  • little transparency surrounding S-Comm, ICE misrepresents program

We urge you, on behalf of the immigrant community here in Minnesota, to reject our state’s participation in the Secure Communities program by vetoing SF 1143. Immigrants from many nations form a vibrant part of the fabric of our community here in Minnesota, and implementing S-Comm will only serve to harm our community. In this light, MIRAc has recently launched the No More Deportations Campaign, and we are working to stop ICE-police collaboration on programs like Secure Communities and the Criminal Alien Program in Hennepin County. So far we have collected over 300 signatures on a petition opposing these two programs. We are counting on your support on this critical issue.

Minnesota Immigrant Rights Action Committee
No More Deportations Campaign

Friday, May 20 – 12:30 pm – Press Conference on Capitol Steps: NO More Deportations in Minnesota

May 19, 2011

This is a red alert! Secure Communities deportation program may be about to pass in Minnesota. This will lead to a dramatic increase in deportations & separation of families in Minnesota. We have to speak out now if we want to stop it! See Star Tribune article. The time to act is NOW!

Friday, May 20 – 12:30 pm – Press Conference on Capitol Steps: NO More Deportations in Minnesota

We Insist that Gov. Dayton Veto SF 1143 Unless the “Secure Communities” Deportation Amendment is Removed!
Join MIRAc at the Capitol on Friday to send a message to Minnesota legislators and to Governor Dayton that we don’t want “Secure Communities” deportation program in Minnesota! On May 16, State Sen. Ortman added an amendment to the Omnibus Data Practices Bill (SF 1143) that would force Minnesota to participate in Secure Communities deportation program. She snuck this onto the totally unrelated bill with no debate or discussion, no committee meetings, no discussion on the senate floor. If Gov. Dayton doesn’t veto this bill, Secure Communities will be implemented statewide in Minnesota.

Join us to insist that Gov. Dayton VETO SF1143 unless the Secure Communities amendment is removed!

If you can’t be there, please call Gov. Dayton at 651-201-3400 or 800-657-3717.


Viernes, 20  mayo – 12:30 pm – Conferencia de prensa en las gradas del capitolio:  No mas deportaciones en Minnesota!

Exigimos que gobernador Dayton vete al SF 1143 si no quitan la enmienda del programa de deportaciones “Secure Communities”
Unete con MIRAc en el capitolio en San Pablo el viernes para mandar un mensaje a los legisladores y al gobernador Dayton que no queremos el programa de deportaciones “Secure Communities” en Minnesota! El 16 de mayo, Senador Ortmann anadio una enmienda al Omnibus Data Practices Bill (SF 1143) que obligaria a Minnesota participar en el programa de deportaciones “Secure Communities”. Ella metio esta enmienda en una propuesta de ley que no tiene nada que ver con inmigracion sin debate, sin discusion, sin audiencia de ningun comite, sin discusion del senado. Eso va a ser la ley si gobernador Dayton no vete la propuesta de ley entera.

Unete con nosotros para insistir que el gobernador VETA al SF1143 si no sacan la enmienda Secure Communities de la propuesta de ley.

Si no puedes llegar el viernes, por favor llame al gobernador Dayton: 651-201-3400 o 800-657-3717.


Minnesota Immigrant Rights Action Committee (MIRAc)
651-389-9174 | |

Presentacion sobre la campana No Mas Deportaciones

April 14, 2011

Este PDF contiene una presentacion de la informacion basica sobre la campana No Mas Deportaciones. Cuando lo presentamos en vivo, lo hacemos como slideshow en Powerpoint, con mas explicacion. Queremos compartirlo aqui porque ayuda con los puntos basicos sobre la campana.

Presentacion sobre la campana No Mas Deportaciones

Video: Criminal Alien Program / Programa de Criminales Extranjeros

April 11, 2011

Este es un video de la campana No Mas Deportaciones sobre el programa de deportaciones que se llama”Criminal Alien Program” (CAP) / Programa de Criminales Extranjeros. Nuestra campana quiere quitar este programa de deportacion del condado Hennepin y del estado de Minnesota.

23 enero – 12:00 – Foro comunitario “No Mas Deportaciones” en NE Minneapolis

January 14, 2011

(English below)

23 enero – 12:00 pm – No Mas Deportaciones! – Foro comunitario en NE Minneapolis

¡Los programas de deportacion deben para ya!

El Comite por los Derechos de los Inmigrantes de Minnesota (MIRAc) los invita a un Foro Comunitario.

La campaña ‘No Mas Deportaciones’ busca combatir en contra de los Programas de Deportacion que estan siendo financiados por la Administracion de Obama, estos son el Programa de Criminales Extranjeros y Comunidades Seguras

Ven a este Foro Comunitario y aprende mas acerca de la campaña No Mas Deportaciones!!!

Cuando: Domingo 23 de Enero
Hora: a las 12:00pm.
Donde: Restaurante Puerta del Sol
(3800 Central Avenue Northeast, Minneapolis, MN 55421)

Volante PDF

Campaña No Más Deportaciones | MIRAc |651.389.9174 |

Jan. 23 – 12:00 pm – No More Deportations! Community forum in NE Minneapolis

Deportation programs must stop now!

The Minnesota Immigrant Rights Action Committee (MIRAc) invites you to a community forum

The ‘No More Deportations’ campaign seeks to fight against deportation programs that are being funded by the Obama Administration, these are the Criminal Alien Program and Safer Communities.

Come to the Community Forum and learn more about how you can take part in the No More Deportations campaign!

When: Sunday January 23rd
Time: 12:00pm
Where: Restaurante Puerta del Sol
(3800 Central Avenue Northeast, Minneapolis, MN 55421)

Flyer PDF

No More Deportations campaign  |  MIRAc  |651.389.9174  |