What does immigration policy mean to those who enforce it at a local level? PT went to America's border and its heartland to find out.
AMERICA'S "QUIET" BORDER
PT: Does Blaine have a problem with undocumented workers, or immigrants living there illegally?
Chief Haslip: My sense is that Blaine has less of a problem of resident illegal aliens than many cities our size simply because of the large community of federal law enforcement officers who work and reside here. Blaine police officers share common radio frequencies with U.S. Border Patrol agents because we work so closely together, hour by hour and day by day. We share information and resources with Border Patrol, CBP and ICE wherever possible, and thereby help offset the sense of vulnerability that might otherwise arise from living in a border community.
PT: How do you think immigration policy could improve, both on the federal and state level?
Chief Haslip: U.S. immigration policy could improve by acknowledging the critical role that local criminal justice agencies play in border security. There are many instances where local officers develop the information or make the observations which lead to interdiction of criminal illegal alien activity. Especially on the northern border, local jurisdictions are asked to absorb a disproportionate share of the cost of this interdiction activity. To improperly recognize this impact does a disservice to the security of the United States as a whole, as well as diminishing the effectiveness of those local efforts.