NPR reports that, as Hurricane Harvey bored down on the Gulf Coast on Friday, the U.S. Border Patrol said that it plans to keep its immigration checkpoints in Texas open in spite of the storm. That prompted concern that undocumented immigrants will ignore instructions to evacuate for fear that they’ll be caught and deported.
A joint statement from Immigration and Customs Enforcement and Customs and Border Protection exhibited some sensitivity toward immigrants fearing the hurricane:
“The Department’s law enforcement components will be at the ready to help anyone in need of assistance. In evacuation or response, we are committed to making sure that we can assist local authorities quickly, safely, and efficiently. Routine non-criminal immigration enforcement operations will not be conducted at evacuation sites, or assistance centers such as shelters or food banks. The laws will not be suspended, and we will be vigilant against any effort by criminals to exploit disruptions caused by the storm.”