In response to the reported arrest by Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) agents of an undocumented immigrant outside a Providence courthouse, ACLU of RI executive director Steven Brown today issued the following statement:
“Last month, more than a dozen organizations, including the ACLU of RI called on the state’s top officials to take action to protect Rhode Island’s immigrant communities from heavy-handed enforcement actions by ICE. In particular, we noted the harm that ICE courthouse arrests elsewhere in the country were causing, discouraging victims of domestic violence and other crime victims and witnesses from contacting and helping law enforcement in their investigation of crimes.
“We once again strongly urge both the state Attorney General [Peter Kilmartin] and RI Supreme Court’s Chief Justice [Paul Suttell] to call on ICE officials to refrain from conducting enforcement actions at or near courthouses. There will be no equal access to justice in Rhode Island if residents are afraid to make use of their judicial system.”
More information about the letters to top officials is available here.