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Portland Police Chief Bans ICE From Using Police Training Facility

"The use of PPB's training facility by other law enforcement agencies should be consistent with City values," she said.

Portland, OR – The Portland Police Bureau (PPB) has banned U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) officers from using the city’s law enforcement training facility.

“The use of PPB’s training facility by other law enforcement agencies should be consistent with City values,” Portland Police Chief Danielle Outlaw said in a press release.

The PPB had signed a two-year contract with the Department of Homeland Security (DHS) December of 2018, which allowed agents from ICE and Homeland Security Investigations (HSI) to lease and utilize the city’s Training Division facility.

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The facility includes two firearms ranges, a vehicle operations area, classroom space, and a scenario village training area.

But on Sept. 16, the police bureau was alerted that there was a potential conflict between “city values” and ICE being allowed to lease the facility, according to the PPB press release.

Outside agencies wanting to use the space must “be consistent with the City’s values and Federal State, and local laws,” to include a city resolution that vows to “prohibit the use of City funds, personnel or equipment to enforce federal immigration law,” the PPB said.

The PPB canceled the contract with ICE on Sept. 19, following an internal review.

Because it does not “enforce immigration laws,” HSI will still be allowed to utilize the facility, the department said.

“A mistake was made due to miscommunication during the contract approval process,” Chief Outlaw said in the release.” When the oversight was brought to our attention, we took immediate action.”

The department has already implemented a new process for future contracts “which ensures proper oversight, review, and approval of contracts,” the chief added.

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Portland City Commissioner JoAnn Hardesty’s office praised the Democratic Socialists of America (DSA) for having alerted the police bureau that ICE shouldn’t be allowed to use the city’s training facility.

The DSA is an openly radical anti-police group that was part of the “Occupy ICE” protests, and aims to “end all ICE activities” in Portland, The Oregonian reported.

“We greatly appreciate the work of DSA to help terminate the contract with ICE’s Enforcement and Removal Operations,” Hardesty’s community outreach coordinator, Matt McNally, said in a letter to the DSA, according to The Oregonian.

“Without you bringing it to our attention, it could have very well gone unnoticed,” McNally wrote. “Our office believes that in no case should a sanctuary city be receiving funding from organizations as diametrically opposed to the values of sanctuary, such as ICE’s Enforcement and Removal Operations. Thanks to your organization’s work, we can now say that Portland will not be.”

The DSA said that getting ICE kicked out of the Portland police training center was “a small victory in a much larger battle,” according to The Oregonian.

Holly Matkin - September Thu, 2019

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