Record Number of Migrants: LAPD's Solution

The issue of immigration and law enforcement has been a contentious one in the United States for many years. As the country continues to grapple with a record number of migrant encounters at the southern border, the Los Angeles Police Department (LAPD) is taking the lead on a unique immigration challenge. The Department is working to allow non-citizen DACA (Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals) recipients to become sworn officers and carry a firearm full-time.

On Tuesday, Los Angeles Police Chief Michel Moore announced that the Board of Police Commissioners had unanimously approved the outline of a policy that would allow DACA recipients the capacity to carry a firearm off-duty. This decision has been largely prohibited by law because DACA recipients are not United States citizens. However, Moore believes that this policy will be a model for other police departments across the country.

The LAPD has been working closely with the Department of Justice at the state and federal levels to create a policy that meets the current immigration laws and policies in the United States. The proposed policy has not been finalized yet and could take weeks or months to become official. However, this move by the LAPD is a significant step towards recognizing the contributions and potential of DACA recipients.

Chief Moore believes that these young people already play a significant role in society. They work, pay taxes, and are responsible members of their communities. Allowing them to become sworn officers and carry a firearm is an expansion of their capabilities and will also benefit the LAPD.

Some may have concerns about having non-citizens as police officers, and the LAPD is well-aware of these issues. However, Moore believes that this is a trend that is already happening across the country. He sees it as a recognition of the fact that DACA recipients are fully functioning members of society who can make valuable contributions as police officers.

One of the main concerns about hiring DACA recipients as police officers is the issue of safety. Being a police officer is a full-time job, and not allowing them to carry a weapon could put their lives at risk. As one LAPD source put it, these officers often work in the communities they police, and not being armed when off-duty could jeopardize their safety.

The LAPD currently has one DACA recipient who recently graduated from the police academy and is ready to start working. Nine more DACA recipients are scheduled to graduate in the spring, and they could potentially join the force as well. The Los Angeles County Sheriff's Department also has six DACA recipients who recently graduated from the academy and nine in training.

Former Los Angeles County Sheriff Alex Villanueva has expressed his disapproval of the LAPD's decision. He believes that hiring DACA recipients is a sign of poor leadership and a result of the shrinking pool of applicants. He is also concerned that this will lead to lowering hiring standards.

However, the Los Angeles Police Protective League, which represents over 9,200 officers, fully supports the policy. They believe that officers are police officers 24 hours a day and should be afforded all the rights and protections that come with the job, regardless of whether they are on or off duty.

The issue of hiring DACA recipients as police officers is not new, and states like California and Colorado have already amended their laws to allow non-citizens to become sworn peace officers. With the LAPD leading the way, other police departments across the country may also start considering the potential of these Dreamers to serve as police officers and protect their communities.

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