Immigration agents inside schools? Why some activists are warning undocumented students about Trump’s policy shifts

Article author: 
Mark Keierleber
Article publisher: 
LA School Report
Article date: 
24 August 2017
Article category: 
National News
Article Body: 

One student exchanged hand gestures with a classmate in the school hallway. Another drew graffiti in his notebook. A third wore a Chicago Bulls T-shirt.

School authorities on Long Island, New York, accused the teenagers of displaying signs or symbols associated with a notorious street gang with close ties to Central America. They were suspended, and several of the students were arrested ...

Not because of gang activity — which has yet to be proved in court — but because of immigration status...

On Long Island, where police are battling the brutal street gang MS-13 — an effort applauded by President Trump in a visit last month — attorney Bryan Johnson said that innocent teenagers at Brentwood High School have been swept up after educators shared student disciplinary records with school resource officers...

Suffolk County Police Commissioner Timothy Sini told WNYC that “there are a number of ways” school suspensions can reach immigration officials. “And kudos to school resource officers for being diligent,” he said ...

In 2011, immigrant rights groups in Carbondale, Colorado, accused a school resource officer — who also served on an ICE anti-gang task force — of racially profiling Latino students. Police Chief Gene Schilling denied the charge and said the program, which wasn’t designed to enforce immigration laws, helped reduce the gang presence in Carbondale schools. But in the process, he said, the police department lost the trust of the community it served.

“If you asked me today, ‘Would you do it again?’ I’d say, ‘There ain’t no way,’ ” Schilling said ...

CAIRCO notes this officer was falsely accused by this immigrants rights group. It was completely unfounded and was dropped, but not after much angst for the officer, who everyone loved, including the 'immigrant'  school children. The officer then sued the Immigrants Rights group for defamation, as he stated he would do. 

Carbondale school officer accused of racial profiling,  Post Independent, Sept. 20, 2011

Defamation lawsuit filed against immigrant rights group,  Post Independent, October 21, 2011