In a statement, Homeland Security Secretary Janet Napolitano said her department was ending one agreement with Arpaio’s Maricopa County Sheriff’s Office and restricting the office’s access to another Homeland Security program.
“Discrimination undermines law enforcement and erodes the public trust,” Napolitano said. “DHS will not be a party to such practices. Accordingly, and effective immediately, DHS is terminating MCSO's 287(g) jail model agreement and is restricting the Maricopa County Sheriff's Office access to the Secure Communities program.”
Under the 287(g) program, Arpaio’s deputies could question jail inmates about their immigration status. Under Secure Communities, fingerprints collected by state and local police are shared with immigration authorities to identify and deport tens of thousands of people each year.
Homeland Security officials did not immediately respond to a request for comment. Neither did representatives for Arpaio and the Sheriff's Department. Arpaio has scheduled a news conference for 3 p.m. Thursday.