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Fairfax County Board Chair Candidate Ryan McElveen Signs Pledge to End Voluntary ICE Collaboration

Would "allow collaboration with ICE only where required by law"

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Check out the following press release by Fairfax County Board Chair candidate Ryan McElveen on allowing “collaboration with ICE only where required by law.” This seems like the right thing to do for me. For instance, how could anyone support “us[ing] threats—whether express or implied— toward a person or their family member in an effort to compel the person to act against their will, including to compel the person to turn themselves in to federal immigration authorities, based upon the actual or perceived citizenship or immigration status of the person or their family member” or “want[ing] anyone in Fairfax County to be afraid to call law enforcement if their safety is at risk, or to report information that may help to solve a crime?” All that does is make the community LESS safe, while inflicting pain for no good reason. So let’s not do it!

McElveen Signs Pledge to End Voluntary ICE Collaboration
Fairfax Chairman candidate will allow collaboration with ICE only where required by law

MCLEAN, Va. – Fairfax County Board of Supervisors Chairman candidate Ryan McElveen announced today that he has signed Fairfax for All’s pledge to submit an ordinance that would end the county’s voluntary collaboration with Immigration and Customs Enforcement.

“When Donald Trump called immigrants ‘animals,’ I was enraged. Not only because I come from a family of immigrants and my wife is an immigrant herself, but also because I grew up in Fairfax County, a community of immigrants,” McElveen said in a video posted on social media. “I’ve seen first-hand what they contribute to our society through hard work.”

“I’ll stand up for what matters to your family, because it’s my family’s fight too,” McElveen concludes.

Throughout his time on the School Board, Ryan has worked to ensure that Fairfax County Public Schools is a safe space for all students, regardless of their immigration status. Over the past year, he has expressed concern that school membership has declined, with hispanic students apparently leaving the county in greater numbers than students from other racial or ethnic groups.

“The bottom line is that Fairfax County must protect all its residents from law enforcement overreach,” McElveen adds. “This ordinance prepared by Fairfax for All is one way to advance the conversation about how to make sure all members of the community feel safe here.”

Ryan also views the ordinance as a way to build trust and cooperation between the police and the wider Fairfax community. Research shows that counties that refuse to honor ICE detainers have statistically lower crime rates and have less strained social and mental health assistance programs, because immigrant populations have less fear of being deported.

The full draft ordinance prepared by Fairfax for All is available here. Among its key points, the ordinance would:

  • Limit ICE agents’ access to county facilities and require that ICE agents clearly identify themselves.
  • Not allow law enforcement to arrest immigrants and bring them into custody when others would be released on a misdemeanor summons.
  • Prohibit police officers from searching or requesting biometric data without cause.
  • Protect confidential and sensitive information about community members.
  • Require the release of data that allows the public to hold county law enforcement accountable to these policies.