Reports of large scale, nationwide deportation raids are stoking fear in Massachusetts immigrant communities. Immigrants — both those with legal status and those living here illegally — are questioning exactly who is vulnerable for deportation.
With his executive order on Jan. 25, President Trump expanded the priorities of immigration officials in terms of who to focus on for removal.
New England ICE officials said in an email that they are not conducting the kinds of operations here that were recently seen in other parts of the country.
But, in a statement ICE officials went on to say: "Every day, as part of routine operations, U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) Fugitive Operations teams target and arrest criminal aliens and other individuals who are in violation of our nation's immigration laws."
Executive director of the Massachusetts Immigrant and Refugee Advocacy Coalition Eva Millona says that's made it difficult to know for certain what to expect from local ICE agents.
"The office here is not conducting any large scale raids as far as we know. However, because of the change in priorities, they're out more on the street so that's where we're hearing from people that, you know, the visibility, it's really higher," Millona said.