Washington, DC — Yesterday, the House Appropriations Committee voted on the Department of Homeland Security (DHS)’s Fiscal Year 2019 Bill.
The bill would give DHS $5 billion for a harmful, unnecessary border wall, 370 CBP officers, 400 NEW ICE personnel to continue arresting and jailing families within the United States, funds for the incarceration of 44,000 immigrants and the expansion of detention camps.
The committee voted along party lines, with all Democrats voting against the bill and Republicans voting to tear more families apart, cage children and put parents behind bars, continue to raid our homes and workplaces to deport immigrants across the country.
Sanaa Abrar, Advocacy Director of United We Dream:
“The House Republicans who voted for this budget are siding with agencies that terrorize immigrant families, separate children from their parents and keep them in cages. You cannot say you want to protect immigrants from Trump’s inhumane policies, while handing DHS a multi-billion dollar check to escalate mass deportations. We need leaders who will demand these agencies are defunded while communities of color in our country continue to suffer.”
John C. Yang, president and executive director of Asian Americans Advancing Justice | AAJC:
"It is unconscionable for Congress to spend more money on immigration agents and jails for traumatized families. Congress must provide a check on the morally bankrupt actions taken by this administration, not vote to bolster their actions.”
Isabel J. Sanchez, National Policy Advocate of Coalition for Humane Immigrant Rights - CHIRLA:
"Congressional Members who voted for the DHS fiscal year 2019 bill should be ashamed of themselves. Instead of allocating more funds to fuel the inhumane enforcement machine --which is clearly flawed and continues to prey on our immigrant communities-- Congress should focus on conducting oversight and accountability of DHS. While the dollar-spewing spigot keeps filling the coffers of this rogue Department, the separation of families and the affront to our national values will not stop."
Vicki B. Gaubeca, Director of the Southern Border Communities Coalition:
"The House Appropriations Committee kowtowed to Trump's deportation force and passed a homeland security spending bill that would continue the traumatic separation of children from their families and waste $5 billion on 200 new miles of a harmful border wall. The committee even refused to re-allocate the costs of one mile of border wall to support firefighters. Our communities need revitalization, not further border militarization."
Richard Morales, Policy and Program Director for LA RED/Faith In Action:
"Congress must stop turning a blind eye to the roguish behavior of the immigration enforcement agencies and restore order. Lawmakers are well aware of the failures of the administration's policies and agencies’ mismanagement, not the least of which is the family separations at the border and in the interior. Now is the time for Congress to say 'No,’ to Trump's wasteful border wall; negligent use of taxpayer money to essentially bribe local government officials, such as sheriffs, to cooperate with ICE detentions; and other tools Trump is using to institutionalize his violence against immigrant communities.”
Heidi Altman, Director of Policy for the National Immigrant Justice Center:
“Today, the U.S. House of Representatives Appropriations Committee squandered its opportunity to hold ICE and CBP accountable for fiscally irresponsible and morally reprehensible actions that terrorize families and American communities. Taxpayers should not be forced to pay for an incarceration and deportation system that routinely operates outside the bounds of the U.S. Constitution, laws, fundamental human right principles, and basic morality. Congress must cut funding for immigration detention and enforcement.”
Silky Shah, Executive Director of Detention Watch Network:
“There has been a mass awakening by the American people to the atrocities committed by ICE and CBP in the name of Trump’s overtly anti-immigrant agenda. And yet, Members of Congress continue to bankroll the deadly agencies, turning a blind eye to the demands of their constituents while perpetuating human suffering through incarceration and family separation. Even with the ink dried on the fraught Fiscal Year 18 appropriations bill, ICE continues to shamefully request more money to close out the year. And now this proposed Fiscal Year 19 budget bill just doubles down on Trump’s inhumane immigration detention expansion. Members of Congress must take a stand against Trump’s anti-immigrant agenda and defund hate.”
The #DefundHate campaign, composed of organizations representing directly impacted communities, faith leaders, and civil rights and immigrant rights advocates, is committed to divestment from agencies that tear apart our families and terrorize our communities. For too long, our representatives have said they care about our communities while simultaneously funding aggressive immigration enforcement and deadly immigration jails. They must be held accountable to keep their promises and stand with the immigrant community. We call on our members of Congress to say no and vote against wasting taxpayer dollars on an abusive and deadly immigration enforcement system. We want our tax dollars used to strengthen our families and communities by investing in education, housing, nutrition and health care programs that provide opportunity and increase well-being.