More than 125 Border and National Organizations Demand Biden Administration Refuse Support for Texas’ Operation Lone Star and Reject SB 602 Agreements

Media Contact: Mallory Adamski - [email protected] - Mobile/text: (619) 571-1610

TEXAS – On the eve of President Biden’s visit to the U.S.-Mexico border in Texas, 128 advocacy organizations from across the southern border region and the country issued a joint letter today demanding President Biden and Department of Homeland Security Secretary (DHS) Mayorkas refuse to sign any agreements with the state under TX SB 602, new Operation Lone Star legislation now in effect allowing U.S. Customs and Border Protection (CBP) to enforce Texas state criminal laws at Border Patrol checkpoints and Ports of Entry.

“President Biden’s visit to the border region presents an opportunity for the Administration to openly reject Operation Lone Star and SB 602, which is well within his power to do so,” said Ricky Garza, Border Policy Counsel at the Southern Border Communities Coalition, who is based in McAllen, Texas. “Operation Lone Star is a racist political project of Governor Abbott that unconstitutionally targets migrants and border residents alike based on race and national origin, violating human rights. Our joint letter demands that President Biden and DHS Secretary Mayorkas refuse to engage in SB 602 agreements as the federal government should take no part in this.”

SB 602, passed during Texas’ last regular legislative session, allows Texas to deputize CBP agents to search, seize, and arrest any person for a suspected violation of state criminal law, whether it is related to immigration law or not. While Texas passed this law inviting CBP to make agreements with the state, CBP is under no obligation to sign agreements with Texas. The letter highlights the need for President Biden and DHS Secretary Mayorkas to reject signing agreements with Texas as it further blurs the line between criminal and immigration enforcement. CBP agents have no place enforcing Texas state criminal laws.

“The Immigrant Legal Resource Center has been sounding the alarm for nearly three years on Gov. Greg Abbott’s unconstitutional Operation Lone Star (OLS), which has now led to the waste of nearly $10 billion in state money and the passage of racist SB 4 laws that target all Black and Brown Texans regardless of their status. Any federal participation in this program or flawed legislation will signal that the Biden administration has caved completely to anti-immigrant rhetoric and will embolden other states to replicate the hateful laws and policies currently in place in Texas,” said Carolina Canizales, Senior Texas Strategist, Immigrant Legal Resource Center.

“For nearly two years, Texas has been usurping federal authority over immigration matters and criminalizing people based on national origin in open defiance of the U.S. Constitution,” said Lourdes M. Rosado, President and General Counsel at LatinoJustice. “Operation Lone Star is as cynical as it is unconstitutional; its purpose is to score political points by demonizing and then imprisoning the most vulnerable. The administration should be doing everything it can to shut down Operation Lone Star and should reject Texas’s ploy to make it complicit in this racist campaign.”

While Texas continues its expansion of Operation Lone Star in violation of civil and human rights, the federal government is under no obligation to help it. The undersigned and community members in Texas believe that border communities deserve a region that protects human dignity instead.  



The Southern Border Communities Coalition (SBCC) brings together organizations from San Diego, California to Brownsville, Texas, to ensure that border enforcement policies and practices are accountable and fair, respect human dignity and human rights, and prevent the loss of life in the region.


LatinoJustice PRLDEF works to create a more just society by using and challenging the rule of law to secure transformative, equitable and accessible justice, by empowering our community and by fostering leadership through advocacy and education. For over 50 years, LatinoJustice PRLDEF has acted as an advocate against injustices throughout the country. To learn more about LatinoJustice, visit


The Immigrant Legal Resource Center (ILRC) is a national nonprofit that works with immigrants, community organizations, legal professionals, and policy makers to build a democratic society that values diversity and the rights of all people. Through community education programs, legal training & technical assistance, and policy development & advocacy, the ILRC works to protect and defend the fundamental rights of immigrant families and communities. Go to for more information.


Privacy Policy / Terms & Conditions

Southern Border Communities Coalition is a program of Alliance San Diego.


Sign in with Facebook, Twitter or email.

Created with NationBuilder