DOJ Racial Profiling Guidance Leaves Immigrants Behind

Communications Manager

December 8, 2014

WASHINGTON, D.C. — Today the Department of Justice announced new guidance on racial profiling for federal law enforcement officials.

The new guidance expands the definition of racial profiling to include religion, national origin, gender and sexual orientation and will apply across the Department of Justice and Department of Homeland Security (DHS).  However, it exempts Customs and Border Protection (CBP) when officers make stops at border crossings and immigration checkpoints.

“The release of this new and more expansive guidance is welcome and comes at an important time for our nation. But unfortunately, it still falls short,” said Ali Noorani, Executive Director of the National Immigration Forum.

“We are very disappointed that this new guidance fails to prohibit CBP from racially profiling during stops and at ports of entry and immigration checkpoints. Racial profiling makes us less secure because it perpetuates the already fractured relationship CBP has with millions of border residents. DHS and CBP’s strides toward transparency and accountability are set back by this exemption.

“In cities like El Paso, whose population is 85 percent Hispanic, allowing Border Patrol agents to take into account race and ethnicity amounts to a license to operate with impunity.”

More information on the guidance is available from the Department of Justice.