Tag: Human Trafficking

Birmingham Delays ICE Agreement, Wants to Assure It Won’t Lead to Police Involvement in Deportations

The Birmingham City Council has delayed approval of an agreement with U.S. Immigrations and Customs Enforcement that would appoint several city police officers as customs officers for ICE’s Homeland Security Investigations jurisdiction.

The 3-year deal would provide for the continuation of a previously established task force that District 2 Councilor Hunter Williams said is focused on “combating both human trafficking and large-scale narcotics operations in the city of Birmingham.”

Mayor Randall Woodfin asserted that the agreement would not result in deportations or administrative removal of any undocumented Birmingham residents.

“I have stated on a pretty consistent basis that the city of Birmingham does not have any interest in doing the federal government’s job, but there’s something more powerful than words, and that’s, like, your actions,” Woodfin said. “We’re not here to do the job of deportation.”

But the association with ICE — and the unclear wording of the ordinance — left both advocates and councilors dubious of the proposal. Read more.

Birmingham Spreading Word Against Human Trafficking Ahead of World Games

When the World Games comes to Birmingham in 2021, it’s projected to bring with it $256 million in economic impact, thanks to an estimated influx of 100,000 athletes and sports fans. But at Tuesday’s meeting of the Birmingham City Council, officials said they were working to prevent a potential unintended consequence of that influx: an uptick in human trafficking.

The council voted Tuesday to pass a resolution calling for a communitywide awareness campaign against human trafficking. The measure, spearheaded by District 6 Councilor Crystal Smitherman and Mayor Randall Woodfin, calls for “comprehensive education of (city) staff and the implementation and enforcement of a zero-tolerance policy of any act that may support human trafficking.” Read more.