Donald Trump’s immigration orders have ripped families and communities apart in the United States. His immigration memos and orders have gone as far as to remove protection from the threat of deportation for military families.
In 2013, the Department of Homeland Security in collaboration with the Department of Defense issued a policy memorandum. The purpose of the memorandum was to prevent the deportation of spouses, parents, and children of active-duty service members. This memorandum created the program called the “Parole in Place.” The program does specifically state it will not halt the deportations of family members with criminal convictions.
Democratic Representative Henry Cueller of Texas critiqued President Trump immigration orders.
This president’s rushed and ill-considered executive orders may have, intentionally or inadvertently, removed those protections, It’s common decency and common sense: how could a soldier, sailor, airman or Marine focus on their duty, when their spouse or child could be deported at any time? “
The Department of Homeland Security officials has yet to announce whether the “Parole in Place” program will be affected by Trump’s orders or if it will be opted out.
The program mission is simple and clear in its initial documents:
Military preparedness can potentially be adversely affected if active members of the U.S. armed forces and individuals serving in the selected reserve … worry about the immigration status of their spouses, parents, and children,”
The possibility of the dismantling of the program is not the part that has the majority of Americans afraid for their communities. The memos mark the beginning of a major shift in U.S. immigration policies by exponentially expanding the scope of operations.
The leaked memorandums carry various instructions such as mobilizing National Guard units for border enforcement and the immediate return of Mexican immigrants who are apprehended at the border to their native state while they wait for the outcome of their hearing.
Further guidelines aim to deter the arrival of an estimated 155,000 of unaccompanied minors who have come from Mexico and Central America with the possible prosecution of parents found to have hired smugglers to aid their children in their crossing. The memo finishes with instructions to agency chiefs to begin hiring 10,000 additional ICE agents and 5,000 more for the Border Patrol, which had been included in Trump’s executive actions.
Further, the memo proceeds to show the Trump administration’s support of section 287(g) of the Immigration and Nationality Act, where the Department of Homeland Security (DHS) may deputize selected state and local law enforcement officers to perform the functions of federal immigration agents. The act essentially allows local deputies to act as immigration agents and detain undocumented immigrants.
The memos are the opening of a Pandora’s box of threats, fear, and nationalism that will damage immigrants’ trust of our country for years to come. A soldier a thousand miles from his home is having to salute a man who does not care about his wellbeing or his family.
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