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Illinois Attorney General Kwame Raoul
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September 20, 2022

ATTORNEY GENERAL RAOUL URGES U.S. SUPREME COURT TO UPHOLD FEDERAL POLICY PRIORITIZING IMMIGRATION ENFORCEMENT ON THREATS TO PUBLIC SAFETY

Chicago  — Attorney General Raoul today joined a coalition of 17 attorneys general in filing an amicus brief in support of guidance issued by the U.S. Department of Homeland Security (DHS) to prioritize immigration enforcement efforts around those who pose the greatest threat to national security, public safety and border security.

Given DHS’ limited enforcement resources, the guidance focuses efforts on direct threats to public safety and reasonably accounts for mitigating factors like a noncitizen’s ties to family members and communities in the United States. In the friend-of-the-court brief filed with the U.S. Supreme Court, Raoul and the coalition make it clear that the enforcement guidance is consistent with longstanding practice and supports family unity, as well as community and economic stability.

“DHS should be able to prioritize its immigration enforcement efforts to ensure our communities are as safe as possible. Illinois is home to thousands of immigrants who positively impact our communities and workforce, and the federal government must be able to take that into account in determining how to enforce federal immigration law,” said Raoul. “It is not an option to have a reactionary approach that will harm immigrant families and communities.”

The coalition states are home to millions of noncitizens who are valued and active contributors to our communities, workforces, and civic organizations. These residents attend school, serve as essential workers, enlist in the military, and care for the sick and elderly. They also support millions of family members who are U.S. citizens. Overall, immigrants add billions to federal, state, and local budgets by paying taxes and purchasing goods and services where they live.

As a result, the coalition states have a significant interest in supporting the federal government’s judgment to devote its limited immigration enforcement resources toward the subset of removable noncitizens who pose a substantial threat to public safety in their communities, rather than adopt an unprincipled, random approach that can inflict substantial harms on immigrants, their families, and their larger communities.

In filing the amicus brief, Attorney General Raoul joins the attorneys general of New York, California, Connecticut, Delaware, the District of Columbia, Maine, Maryland, Massachusetts, Minnesota, Nevada, New Jersey, New Mexico, Oregon, Rhode Island, Vermont and Washington.

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