Governor Patrick rejects S-Comm deportation program

Governor Patrick today announced his opposition to the federal deportation program known as "Secure Communities," or S-Comm, which sends the fingerprints of everyone arrested--not convicted--for any offense to Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE).

News Release | Blog: Governor Patrick walks the walk on community policing and immigration

El Gobernador Patrick rechaza programa federal de deportación en Massachusetts

ACLU celebra el liderazgo del gobernador en contra del programa llamado "Comunidades Seguras/Secure Communities"

English: Gov. Patrick rejects federal deportation program in Massachusetts

Ousted Falmouth conservation commissioner challenges removal after questioning lease of town land

ACLU lawsuit alleges Town of Falmouth violated the free speech and due process rights of commissioner in retaliation for raising concerns about leasing town land to a cranberry grower.

Springfield passes first language-access ordinance in Massachusetts

In May 2011, the City of Springfield enacted a language-access ordinance to ensure that police, fire, emergency medical, and 911 dispatchers can serve non-English speakers. With support from the ACLU of Massachusetts, the Pioneer Valley Project (PVP)--a faith-based organizing project in Springfield--led an 18-month campaign of education and negotiations with the Springfield City Council and Springfield Police Department.

Supporters of the measure cited the fact that close to one-third of Springfield's population does not speak English at home, which leads to serious communication problems in emergency situations. In one case, an English-speaking police officer failed to protect a Spanish-speaking victim because he was only able to communicate with the English-speaking assailant. In another, an immigrant called 911 and couldn't get help because no one spoke her language. And even English speakers suffer if non-English speakers are unable to report crimes, fires, or medical emergencies.

"Springfield is leading the way by passing this ordinance," said Bill Newman, director of the ACLU's Western Massachusetts Legal Office. "It creates a mandate for meeting the safety needs of non-English speakers. Other cities could use this as a model."

127 organizations ask Governor to say NO to "S-Comm"


Opposition to anti-immigrant dragnet is rising, following Illinois withdrawal from memorandum of agreement on the program, inquiries by members of Congress, and coming investigation by Department of Homeland Security's own inspector general.