When is the KCSO 287(g) steering committee meeting? Seems like it should be a fairly straightforward question to answer.
However, since May 24, the Knox County Sheriff’s Office has posted four different dates/times for this meeting.
Originally, the meeting was scheduled for June 26 at 8:30 am:
On June 20, the date was changed to July 10 at 8:30 am:
We are asking AKIN friends and allies to meet with their county commissioners about 287(g). Following are some guidelines for your consideration.
First, set up your meeting:
1. Call or email your commissioner and ask for a meeting on 287(g)
2. Identify 1-2 people who share your concerns and who will join you at this meeting (we can help with this)
Next, figure out your goals for the meeting (here are our suggestions):
by Ann Jefferson
Following up on John Stewart’s guest column on 287(g) in the online News Sentinel of July 3, I would like to pose the question to Sheriff Jones: Why the urgency to deputize the Knox County Sheriff’s Office personnel to carry out federal responsibilities? As a citizen and taxpayer of the county I just can’t see the need for it.
I was one of a group of residents of Knox county who recently attempted to get some answers to troubling questions about the program 287(g) that, according to the ICE web site, has been approved for the county. Neither the sheriff nor his assistant was available to meet with us. Why is all this going on behind closed doors?
by Grant A. Mincy
Here we are, just a group of Knoxvillians rolling into the July 4th weekend. It’s June 30th at 9:30 am. Rain patters and dampens the Scruffy City. We stand across the street from the City County Building in the thick ambiance of Knoxville. Trains whistle forlorn on a gray morning, cars and city trucks hustle and bustle about while church bells chime in the background. There are 18 of us from all different walks of life. We stand in an inter-generational meeting, some of us people of faith, university professors, community college professors, Knox County school teachers, retirees, lawyers, laborers and even a young one donning a “Change the World” t-shirt. We have gathered on this humid and weepy morning out of collective concern for our great city and neighbors.
by John G. Stewart
What a coincidence. Here we are, on July Fourth, celebrating the signing of our Declaration of Independence from a tyrannical British monarch who denied our colonial forebears their basic democratic rights and, at the same time, we discover that Knox County Sheriff Jimmy “J.J.” Jones has signed a secret agreement with U.S. Immigration & Customs Enforcement (ICE) that places at severe risk the democratic rights of thousands of our Knox County neighbors.
Granted, Jones is a bad reincarnation of King George III, but the denial of democratic rights we have witnessed in how he has gone about arranging for Knox County’s acceptance of the so-called 287(g) authority is a case-book example of arbitrary and non-democratic decision-making. Our founders declared they had had enough of the King’s “ … repeated injuries and usurpations.”
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
June 28, 2017
Knox County 287(g) Memorandum of Agreement Appears on ICE Website
Knoxville, TN—We are disappointed to learn that a 287(g) memorandum of agreement (MOA), signed by both ICE and Knox County Sheriff Jimmy “JJ” Jones, has appeared on ICE’s website. The MOA was signed by Sheriff Jones on June 13, 2017 and by Matthew Albence, Executive Associate Director of ICE Enforcement and Removal Operations, on June 15, 2017. The MOA is available here: https://www.ice.gov/doclib/foia/memorandumsofAgreementUnderstanding/KnoxCounty.pdf.
Sheriff Jones has not publicly acknowledged Knox County’s approval for 287(g). The lack of transparency surrounding the program’s approval and timeline for implementation mirrors the Sheriff’s ongoing refusal to meet with Knox County residents to hear concerns about the program.
- Knox Co. Sheriff approved for ICE partnership; only agency in TN
Knox County approved for controversial ICE program
It is our great disappointment to inform you that a 287(g) memorandum of agreement (MOA) signed by Knox County and ICE has appeared on the ICE website. You can read the MOA here.
In the absence of any explanation to the Knoxville community by either ICE or Knox County Sheriff Jimmy “JJ” Jones, we assume this means that the 287(g) program is going forward.
by Meghan Conley and Fran Ansley
What is 287(g)?
287(g) is a voluntary program through which state and local law enforcement agencies can choose to have their officers trained and deputized to act as Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) agents. The program uses local resources to enforce federal immigration law.[i]
What is the history of 287(g) in Knox County?
Knox County Sheriff Jimmy “JJ” Jones first applied to join the 287(g) program in 2009. Immigrants’ rights advocates in Knoxville and beyond mounted a hard-fought campaign in opposition to the proposal, and federal authorities eventually denied the sheriff’s application in 2013. Many in Knox County remember Jones’ alarming and dehumanizing response to this rejection: “I will continue to enforce these federal immigration violations with or without the help of U.S Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE). If need be, I will stack these violators like cordwood in the Knox County Jail until the appropriate federal agency responds.” In February 2017, Jones renewed his application. Local state and national groups have objected.
ICE has not yet announced a decision. Update: We recently learned that a signed memorandum of agreement (MOA) between ICE and Knox County Sheriff Jimmy “JJ” Jones has appeared on the ICE website. For more information, click here.