ACLU Statement on Biden’s Department of Homeland Security Budget

May 28, 2021 3:30 pm

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WASHINGTON — President Biden announced his proposal for a $6 trillion budget for Fiscal Year 2022 today, funding the Department of Homeland Security at the same level as his predecessor. The budget includes funding for 30,000 beds in Immigration and Customs Enforcement detention, sustained funding for Customs and Border Protection, and over $100M to address “domestic terrorism” and “countering extremism” programs.

Naureen Shah, senior advocacy and policy counsel at the ACLU, issued the following statement:

“President Biden’s proposed DHS budget today includes positive measures to increase accountability and oversight, but fails to make a sharp enough break from the Trump administration’s wasteful and harmful spending on the detention and deportation machine. Allowing abusive programs that escalated under the Trump administration — particularly ICE’s 287g program with local law enforcement — to set the baseline for the budget betrays the promise of the Biden administration’s vision of a humane and rights-respecting immigration system. After promising to end ‘countering extremism’ programs, Biden has instead allocated more than $100 million for these programs that have not only failed in previous administrations, but also wrongly stigmatized, surveilled, and discriminated against Black and Brown communities — particularly Muslims.

“We have been encouraged by President Biden’s rhetoric, which speaks of building a just and humane immigration system. We urge him to fund that vision appropriately by divesting from the programs that abuse, degrade, and criminalize immigrants and reinvesting in our communities.”

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