Skip to main content

The following statement is from National Immigrant Justice Center Director of Policy Heidi Altman following the Senate confirmation hearing for Ed Gonzalez, nominee to become the next director of U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE):

“It was difficult to hear the political rhetoric of the committee members so unchanged from the racist and alarmist language we’ve heard from ICE’s propaganda machine over the 20 years since it was created, and to watch a nominee selected by President Biden in 2021 embrace that messaging. Mr. Gonzalez spoke approvingly of the 287(g) program and other ICE actions that incentivize racial profiling and punitive enforcement. And he failed to even once address the cruelty and abuses ICE has systematically delivered to immigrant communities throughout the United States since its inception. The Trump administration in particular laid bare the racism underlying an immigration system that relies on detention, deportation, and the criminalization of Black and Brown communities. Ignoring those lessons will mean that the same systems of hate, injustice, and racism the Biden administration purports to oppose will continue to thrive. If he is confirmed, we hope to see Mr. Gonzalez instead take these lessons to heart and work with communities to reimagine an approach to immigration enforcement that respects human rights.”