Before there was the so-called sanctuary state legislation, there was the Truth Act.
The state law, which went into effect in 2017, requires immigrants in local jails to be notified that they can refuse an interview with ICE at no penalty to themselves. Yet the proportion of people who consent to an interview without a lawyer present appears to be growing, according to data released at a county forum Tuesday.
Maya Srikrishnan reports that immigrants rights advocates were surprised about the data. “Most people should be outright denying the ICE interview,” if protocol is being appropriately followed, said Felicia Gomez, policy coordinator of the California Immigrant Policy Center.
Gomez also worried that law enforcement officials might be applying some coercion behind closed doors to get detainees to agree to an interview.
“Those are the things that are hard for us as advocates to track since we’re not in the jails to see it happen,” she said.
According to other data presented at the legally mandated forum, the number of immigrant detainees released to ICE by the County Sheriff’s Department has gone down overall, because of the California Values Act.