A number of undocumented immigrants testified before Connecticut lawmakers on Friday in support of legislation to tighten state laws that prohibit local law enforcement from collaborating with ICE.
Speaking through an interpreter, Cristhian Cozayatl of New Haven said he was involved in a minor car accident on I-91, and the state trooper who responded called ICE.
“Two men came out of those vans, wearing vests that said ICE. One of them asked me if I had DACA, or the Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals. I said no. The state trooper then handed me over to the immigration agents, who made me go into one of the vans and took me to Hartford.”
David McGuire of the ACLU of Connecticut argues that federal law does not require state troopers to do that. He said that’s why it’s necessary to tighten the 2013 Connecticut TRUST Act.
“The idea was to prevent law enforcement from collaborating with Immigration and Customs Enforcement, specifically focused on the detention and transportation of folks that ICE wanted to pick up.”
Republicans on the committee argue that the new legislation is unnecessary. They say immigration policy should be handled by the federal government.