The Washington Times
The Department of Homeland Security has expanded its list of locations off-limits for enforcement to include anywhere near graveyards, community organization offices and any area where children “gather” — effectively blocking officers from making arrests across many urban areas. The rules, issued Wednesday, are designed to give illegal immigrants and others associated with them access to essential services without fear of arrest, said Homeland Security Secretary Alejandro Mayorkas. “This principle is fundamental,” Mr. Mayorkas said in a memo. “We can accomplish our enforcement mission without denying or limiting individuals’ access to needed medical care, children access to their schools, the displaced access to food and shelter, people of faith access to their places of worship, and more.” ICE has always had a “sensitive locations” policy that puts churches, hospitals and schools off-limits for arrests, but the latest policy turns them into “protected areas” and adds massive sanctuaries where immigration agents and enforcement officers are told to stay out. Among the new locations are any place children “gather.” Examples are playgrounds, day care facilities and school bus stops. Any social services location is also on the no-go list. Mr. Mayorkas said ICE employees nearby “can have the same restraining impact” on someone trying to access a service, so officers need to avoid areas around playgrounds and school bus stops, not just the specific locations.