This issue is part of our work on ensuring the dignity of life. Because each person is created in the image and likeness of God, we are committed to promoting and defending the dignity of human life. We advocate for a consistent ethic of life from conception to natural death on a range of issues.
What is the issue?
- The Illinois Trust Act sets reasonable, constitutional limits on local police interaction with Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) to foster trust between immigrant communities and local police.
- Federal courts have consistently held that immigration detainers are not mandatory.
- The courts have ruled that detaining an individual based on a detainer, without a judge finding probable cause to hold that person, violates the Fourth Amendment of the U.S. Constitution which protects against unreasonable search and seizure.
- Local police can still act upon a valid, enforceable federal warrant, and can still communicate with ICE.
Why does it matter?
- Illinois in in the top 10 states with the largest immigrant population. It is estimated that 450,000 undocumented immigrants live in Illinois as of 2014.
- Two-thirds of undocumented immigrants have lived in the U.S. for at least 10 years; in Illinois, 90 percent of households with at least one undocumented immigrant also have at least one member of the household who is legally present, in most cases a U.S. citizen.
- The threat of increased immigration enforcement has raised concerns among immigrant families, some who decide to forego necessary medical services out of fear they could be putting themselves or family members at risk.
- Trust among immigrant communities and law enforcement is jeopardized when police act as immigration agents.
- Immigrants are less likely to engage with local law enforcement and report crimes when officers are deputized to carry out federal immigration enforcement work.
What is the AMITA Health perspective?
- We are called to be a voice for the voiceless. Catholic social teaching calls us to advocate for those who do not have a voice and to fight for social justice. We support measures that seek to protect immigrant communities, and believe immigrants deserved continued protection and a path to citizenship.
- Our community’s health is at risk due to fear. When members of our community live in fear, they often avoid places that would draw unwanted attention or put them at risk of harassment from enforcement officials. The result is many don’t access necessary services in the community and that puts their health and well-being as risk.
- AMITA Health believes in protecting the dignity of every human life. Each individual impacted by this Act is created in the image and likeness of God. We are committed to promoting and defending the dignity of human life wherever it is under threat.
Featured news includes articles from multiple viewpoints and is designed to keep you abreast of the current debate around this issue. This information should not be construed as our point of view.
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