1) fully investigate the incidents and officers who appear to have violated internal policy concerning the questioning of vehicle passengers who are not suspected of committing any type of crime or violation,
2) ensure transparency of these investigations and work with community members and community advocates in ensuring that full and complete investigations are carried out, and
3) make public any new internal policies and/or procedures that demonstrate how the State Police will effectuate Governor Cuomo’s Executive Order No. 170 requiring that all state actors refrain from inquiring into an individual’s immigration status.
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New York State Police: Stop Enforcing Immigration!
The Workers' Center of CNY, Worker Justice Center of NY and others are urging people of conscience to call the Superintendent of the New York State Police, George P. Beach II and Troop E Commander, Major Richard Allen regarding recent violations of the Executive Memorandum: 2014, Immigration Law—Alien Procedures (EM #14-48) This EM states: “As applied to vehicle passenger- Even when you stop a vehicle containing a passenger who you believe may be an illegal alien, you have no authority to request or demand identification documents from a passenger."
Governor Andrew Cuomo has gone even further to underscore this by issuing Executive Order 170, which prohibits state agencies and law enforcement officers from inquiring about or disclosing an individual's immigration status, with some limited exceptions. Unfortunately, recent incidents demonstrate that State Police have in fact violated the Executive Memorandum and newly minted Executive Order, and thus far, there have been no public denunciations of these egregious and flagrant breaches of the policy.
On the morning of June 29, 2017, a yet-unidentified State Police Trooper stopped a vehicle in Penn Yan in Yates County, ostensibly because the driver was not wearing a seat belt. Although the officer did not ticket the passenger, he asked him for identification, which he did not have with him. The Trooper let the driver go on his way with a ticket but arrested two Latino passengers and took them to a State Police barracks in Dundee, where they were held for immigration officers to assume custody. One passenger has already been deported and the other--a long time community member and father of two--is now facing deportation. This has truly devastated his children and the wider community.
The State government has opened an investigation into this incident. While we applaud them for opening this investigation, we are also demanding that the New York State Police in general, and Troop E in particular, be transparent with the public in how the offending officers will be held accountable as well as how they will ensure that the new Executive Order will be implemented and enforced.
Call Details & Script:
Superintendent of New York State Police - George P. Beach518-457-6721
Troop E Commander Major Richard Allen585-398-4100
Professional Standards Bureau of the New York State Police518-457-6554
Governor Andrew Cuomo's Discrimination & Bias Hotline1-888-392-3644
Script:“Hi my name is ____________ and I am calling from __________________. I am deeply troubled and concerned by a state police officer from troop E’s violation of the Executive Memorandum: 2014, Immigration Law—Alien Procedures (EM #14-48). This policy prohibits state police from asking for the identification from passengers they suspect are undocumented. Unfortunately on June 29th, the Troop E officer breached this policy by asking two Latino passengers for their ID’s and then turning them over to Border Patrol because they didn’t have identification. Now a father of two who’s also a long standing community member is facing deportation which has devastated his family and community. To date, the officer has not been held accountable. I demand that the State Police fully investigate this incident and ensure transparency in communicating the result to the community. Further, Governor Cuomo recently issued an executive order explicitly prohibiting law enforcement asking about immigration status. I’m calling because I want to know what concrete steps the leadership of Troop E will take going forward, to ensure the Executive Memorandum and the newly minted Executive Order will be enforced and how officers will be held accountable when they commit such egregious violations.”
If you have any problems or questions please contact Nikeeta Slade with the Workers' Center of CNY at email@example.com
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