For Immediate Release

Tuesday, May 19, 2020

Press@vacir.org

Prince William County A Step Closer To Removing 287(G) Ice Agreement & Future Criminal Justice Reform

Prince William County, VA – The Virginia Coalition for Immigrant Rights (VACIR) applauds the appointments of three at-large jail board seats to Prince William – Manassas Regional Adult Detention Center. These candidates believe in ending the 287(g) ICE agreement and will help enact future criminal justice reform. The Prince William Board of Supervisors appointed Delegate Elizabeth Guzman, Rev. Cozy Bailey and Tracey Lenox. 

The 287(g) renewal agreement expires on June 30, 2020. At the next jail board meeting in June, the ICE agreement will be on the agenda. Under 287(g) program, ICE designates officers at the Prince William – Manassas Regional Adult Detention Center to help detain, process and enable deportation proceedings. The agreement has a long history of intimidation for the immigrant community. 

“By appointing candidates who are not only committed to end the 287(g) and fixing our criminal justice system that needs major improvements,  it will provide an opportunity for Prince William County to advance social justice,” said Evelin Urrutia, Executive Director of Tenants and Workers United. “These jail board appointments will give a chance to start changing the county for the better.”

The 287(g) agreement in Prince William County is one of two in Virginia. Majority of the expenses to run the program are paid for by the taxpayers of Prince William County and Manassass. The county’s ICE agreement costs the jail about $300,000 on average every year as stated from the Prince William Times article.

“Ending the 287g agreement would send the message that every family is welcome and a valued part of our communities, said Laura Goren with The Commonwealth Institute for Fiscal Analysis. “This is the right thing for its own sake, and it’s also the right thing to do to build trust in local government during the current pandemic and resulting recession.”

Although these new jail board appointees will have created an opportunity to end the 287(g) ICE agreement in June, there is an outstanding possibility to appoint someone in the county executive’s place. The county executive also sits on the jail board. The Board of Supervisors will decide if someone will take the place of the county executive during the jail board meeting by or at the June 2nd meeting.

To watch the public comments and votes, the Prince William County Board of Supervisors  archive the meeting on their website at pwcgov.org/video.