To: Sheriff Schaffer, Cape May County Sheriff, Freeholder Thornton, Freeholder Director, Freeholder Morey, Freeholder Desiderio, Freeholder Vice Director, Freeholder Hayes, Freeholder Pierson, and Rita Marie Fulginiti, County Clerk

Say No to ICE: Stop 287(g) in Cape May County

Cape May County Sheriff has recently applied to become a 287(g) jurisdiction. Stop Cape May County Correctional Facility from entering into a 287(g) agreement with Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) and becoming an ICE Facility. The program funnels immigrants into a detention and deportation system that does not afford due process rights, and ultimately tears apart families, leaving weakened communities in its wake.

Why is this important?

Numerous reports and studies have shown the negative human and legal impacts of implementing 287(g). Investigation has revealed that the program has led to widespread racial profiling as police officers target immigrants and people of color for stops, searches, and interrogations. The program has also led to distrust between immigrant communities and law enforcement, making it harder for local police to do their jobs. This program is not mandatory: only 34 law enforcement agencies in the entire country have 287(g) agreements deputizing their officers to act as immigration agents, and only 2 in New Jersey. The Maricopa County, AZ program, run by Sheriff Joseph Arpaio, was the largest 287(g) jurisdiction, until it was terminated following a federal investigation into racial profiling and discrimination.

The principal mission of law enforcement officers in this State is to enforce the criminal laws and to protect the communities that they serve. It is not to enforce federal immigration laws. Effective policing requires the cooperation of, and a positive relationship with, all members of the community.

Cape May County is home to many immigrants and this program hurts the trust from immigrant community members. We respectfully request that the Cape May County Sheriff and Freeholders discontinue the agreement with ICE.


Reasons for signing

  • Resist facism
  • The taxpayers of Cape May County hired the Sheriff and Deputies to protect and serve the people of our county. Harassing and arresting people of color and/or people who speak a different language and breaking up their families is not their job. Contracting with the feds for increased revenue is not a good enough reason to engage in this destructive practice and be distracted from the work for which they were elected and hired.

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