Orleans Parish Sheriff Marlin Gusman has defended his policy regarding cooperation with Immigration and Customs Enforcement after the city was included in a Trump administration list of 118 cities labeled "sanctuary jurisidictions."
New Orleans made the list because the Sheriff reportedly declined a request by ICE to detain a Mexican citizen who had been convicted of battery.
Gusman says he is "proud to continue to stand behind our jail policies that make New Orleans a safer city while also keeping families together and using precious resources wisely."
Under the policy, the Sheriff’s Office declines all voluntary ICE detainer requests unless the individual is charged with murder, aggravated rape, aggravated kidnapping, treason or armed robbery with a firearm.
“I firmly believe that these policies and practices promote what is best for our city and comply with federal law," Gusman said in a statement released by his office. "Our ICE policy is about freedom and fairness, ideals upon which I hope we can all agree and upon which our country was built. If we are to continue to be judged by these ideals, I believe our current ICE policy places us on the right side of this issue and keeps us on the path to a stronger future.”