By Esteban Ginocchio

Secure Communities (a program much like 287(g)) was enacted in Forsyth County (Winston-Salem and Kernersville) on August the 11th. The Winston-Salem Chief of Police Scott Cunningham and Forsyth County Sheriff Ted Paxton went on QuePasa Radio to guarantee that the program will be used only for the deportation of undocumented immigrants who are under arrest for “serious” crimes. They also stated that no arrests would be made for driving with an expired license and that they will only detain people who do not carry any form of ID.

Unlike the Alamance County Sheriff’s Office, which is under federal investigation for racial profiling under the  similar 287(g) program, the implementation of Secure Communities in Forsyth County promises a more understanding approach to the issue of immigration and seems to shy away from criminalizing and scaring a large segment of the community.

A large segment of the Piedmont Triad community cannot obtain a driver’s license, not because they choose not to, and the current policy is pitched as an attempt to understand.

However, let’s keep in mind that in some cases, the people who are implementing the program try to start deportation procedures as soon as they can, on anyone. Especially when a person who is running for election, like a Sheriff, uses 287(g) as a political pitch.

So, even though they are publicly outlining the program, it is no guarantee that sheriff’s office will actually follow the program as it was meant to be followed.

You can find the full note in Spanish on QuePasa Newspaper’s 39th
issue for this year.