Thursday, June 21st, 2018

USDA Rules Against Forest Service Use of Border Patrol Backup

"The practice of Forest Service officers’ requesting language
interpretation and security backup from Border Patrol agents during
stops of Spanish-speaking people is discriminatory, according to a
federal administrative ruling made public this week. The ruling, by Joe
Leonard Jr., the assistant secretary for civil rights of the Department
of Agriculture, said requesting interpretation assistance was “merely an
excuse to target Latino individuals for immigration
enforcement.” The ruling came in response to a claim by the companion
of a Mexican man who drowned in a river on the Olympic Peninsula of
Washington last year after a Border Patrol officer, summoned by a Forest
Service officer, chased the man into the woods. The couple had been
stopped on national forestland while picking salal, an evergreen shrub
used in floral arrangements. The ruling included disciplinary actions
against some employees, and