ACLU Affiliates in Border States Denounce Administration’s Plan for More Border Enforcement

May 26, 2010

The American Civil Liberties Union’s affiliates in the border states of Arizona, California, New Mexico and Texas were dismayed to learn of the Administration’s plan to send as many as 1,200 National Guard troops to the U.S.-Mexico border and to make a request to Congress for $500 million in supplemental funding to secure the border and enforce federal laws.

“The Administration is buying into an electoral political rhetoric that claims an interest in border enforcement first, before the dialogue on a fair and just immigration reform has even been considered,” says Vicki B. Gaubeca, director of the ACLU of New Mexico Regional Center for Border Rights. “The truth is that there have never been more federal resources and technologies placed at the U.S.-Mexico border than at this point in history.”

Currently, about 90 percent of the more than 20,000 border patrol agents employed by U.S. Customs and Border Protection are deployed along the southern border. This number does not include an additional 6,000 customs officers and another 5,000 ICE agents working along the U.S.-Mexico border. Other federal agencies operating on the southwestern border include the FBI, ATF, DEA, U.S. Marshals and more. Nor does it include complementing initiatives such as 700 miles of border fencing and so-called “fusion centers.”

Community members along the border region, particularly those living within the /wp-content/uploads/article/National Guard Deployment ACLU.pdf”>National Guard Deployment ACLU.pdf