PORTLAND, Ore. (KOIN) — The Trump Administration has reportedly announced that they will be sending Customs and Border Protection officers out across the nation to conduct special operations in sanctuary cities, according to a New York Times report published on Friday, Feb. 14.
“The move reflects President Trump’s persistence in cracking down on so-called sanctuary cities, localities that have refused to cooperate in handing over immigrants targeted for deportation to federal authorities,” stated the article, written by Caitlin Dickerson and Zolan Kanno-Youngs, which also outlined which cities should expect to see the tactical teams, including San Francisco and Los Angeles.
Portland has not been named on the list of cities that might be targeted, however, the ACLU of Oregon said this move was a cause for concern.
“What we have seen from the case of Isidro Tafolla, the US citizen who was harassed and detained by ICE in Washington County, and countless other examples, is that immigration raids and patrols and actions like these frequently target individuals based on their appearance—based on racial profiling,” said Leland Baxter-Neal, staff attorney with the ACLU of Oregon.
He said they’ve seen no indication that Customs and Border Protection Tactical Units are being sent to Portland. However, Baxter-Neal said it sends a message.
“This is retaliation, plain and simple, against local governments that have refused to do Trump’s bidding,” said Baxter-Neal.
Senator Ron Wyden, a member of the Senate Select Committee on Intelligence, also reacted to the recent report.
“First, I think it’s always important that people feel comfortable talking to the police because that kind of information is essential for law enforcement folks to protect everybody in the community,” said Wyden. “And second, I just think, as a general proposition, this idea of terrorizing immigrants is not what our country is about.”
According to the NY Times’ report, “an ICE spokesman declined to comment on the specifics of the latest effort in sanctuary cities.”