WESTCHESTER COUNTY, N.Y. - The Westchester County Jail may soon house immigrants detained by Immigrations and Customs Enforcement after a feeler was sent out to local officials.
Officials confirmed that earlier this year, an email was sent from the Department of Homeland Security to the jail to gauge its interest in housing potential detainees, prompting debate in Westchester.
According to multiple reports, officials with the jail have not yet responded to the inquiry, and requests for such accommodations from federal and state law enforcement is commonplace.
In a joint statement, county legislators stated that “county facilities are not meant to be used to do ICE’s job, especially when the job is in contrast with the values upon which we as a country were founded.
“Not only are the immigration policies of the Trump Administration un-American, but they have been ruled unconstitutional time and time again in federal court.”
This statement comes in contrast to Westchester County Executive Rob Astorino, who previously said that the county will acquiesce to ICE detainer requests asking to hold inmates to be transferred into federal custody.
The legislators went on to add that “reports like this are why we have been hard at work on a comprehension Immigration Protection bill that restricts Westchester taxpayers funds from being used to execute the federal government’s new inhumane policies.
“Holding Westchester residents in our jails without a judicial warrant is unconstitutional and a practice we should eschew. We will not stand by idly as we are asked to do so.”