Denver city leaders hold immigration and refugee forum

Posted at 6:49 PM, Feb 11, 2017

DENVER -- A big crowd attended an immigration and refugee forum hosted by Denver city leaders on Saturday.

The move comes after President Donald Trump's strong moves on immigration reform and refugees coming into the United States.

Mayor Michael Hancock and Denver police chief Robert White were among the speakers inside the auditorium at Place Bridge Academy in Denver.

The location of the forum was fitting. The school is home to students from 40 different countries. The school "stands behind a foundation of acceptance and inclusiveness," according to the school website.

Immigrants, refugees and their supporters had the opportunity to ask city leaders important questions regarding their rights under President Trump's executive orders.

One of the biggest concerns is the threat of deportation even if someone doesn't commit a crime. Mayor Hancock is sticking with his message that Denver will stand by its record of being an inclusive city. 

"We will not become immigration law enforcement officers in this city," Mayor Hancock said to the crowd.

Meantime, in several major American cities, ICE agents are conducting what they call a "surge." They're picking up and deporting undocumented immigrants with criminal records. Homeland Security Secretary General John Kelly told ABC News in an exclusive interview that the operations are lawful.

"If they're picked up and deported, they're the right people," he said. "The men and women of ICE and Homeland Security in general are doing this completely legally."

President Trump's travel ban was also a hot button topic at the Denver forum. The ban is on hold after two court decisions. President Trump is vowing to take the case to the Supreme Court. He continues to argue that a temporary travel ban would simply make America safer and that terrorists have a free ticket into the United States.


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