In response to reports that Immigrations and Customs Enforcement (ICE) will target Chicago and other major cities in Sunday raids, Mayor Lori Lightfoot says she’s directed the local police not to cooperate with any ICE enforcement actions.
Chicago is believed to be among ten U.S. cities—along with Atlanta, Baltimore, Denver, Houston, Los Angeles, Miami, New Orleans, New York, and San Francisco—targeted in upcoming raids directed by President Donald Trump. The action will target up to 2,000 families with members who have received deportation orders.
Lightfoot issued a public statement Friday evening condemning the raids and ordering Chicago’s law enforcement not to assist with any ICE enforcement actions. Lightfoot said she directed Superintendent Eddie Johnson to restrict ICE access to Chicago Police Department databases and Johnson confirmed the order.
Here’s the full text of Lightfoot’s statement:
We are all aware of the threat from President Trump regarding raids by ICE, and in response, Chicago has taken concrete steps to support our immigrant communities. I have directed—and Superintendent Johnson has confirmed—that CPD has terminated ICE’s access to CPD’s databases related to federal immigration enforcement activities. I have also personally spoken with ICE leadership in Chicago and voiced my strong objection to any such raids. Further, I reiterated that CPD will not cooperate with or facilitate any ICE enforcement actions. Chicago will always be a welcoming city and a champion for the rights of our immigrant and refugee communities, and I encourage any resident in need of legal aid to contact the National Immigrant Justice Center.
Chicago—along with dozens of other so-called sanctuary cities which won’t work with federal immigration enforcement—has clashed with the Trump administration in the past.
Lightfoot’s predecessor, Rahm Emanuel, often condemned the President’s rhetoric when it came to threats against immigrant populations and he had a similar stance when it came to Chicago officials not cooperating with ICE. However, the former mayor never faced a situation in which federal raids appeared imminent.
On Monday, President Donald Trump announced the upcoming raids, tweeting “Next week ICE will begin the process of removing the millions of illegal aliens who have illicitly found their way into the United States.”
Update: On Saturday, hours before the raids were expected to begin, the President tweeted the ten-city enforcement operation will not begin for at least two more weeks. The pause will allow Congress time to “get together and work out a solution to the Asylum and Loophole problems at the Southern Border,” Trump wrote. “If not, Deportations start!”