NORTHAMPTON, Mass. (WWLP) – The goal of the Secure Communities Act was to detain dangerous criminal aliens longer than a normal citizen would be for 48 hours. Many communities nationwide, however, have chosen not to comply with those federal requests.
The Northampton Police Department does not honor or enforce any detainer requests from the Immigration and Customs Enforcement agency that are non-criminal in nature. Northampton, Amherst, Holyoke, Springfield are among several in Massachusetts that have voted not to use deportation as leverage against witnesses, victims or suspects.
Mayor David Narkewicz told 22News that he thinks the federal government needs to work on reforming the immigration system.
“The federal government needs to really work on reforming our immigration system. We’re a nation of immigrants. My grandparents are both immigrants, I’m the grandson of immigrants and so we really need to look at our laws,” Narkewicz said.
Northampton police can help immigrant victims of crime apply for a temporary visa that allows them to stay in the country.
In most circumstances regarding undocumented immigrants, the situation is dealt with on a case by case basis. A Sheriff’s Department can also have its own policy.