News Releases

Senator Murray reintroduced legislation to limit the Department of Homeland Security’s ability to stop vehicles and search people and property without warrants within the so-called “border zone”

Senator Murray’s legislation would reduce the “border zone,” which currently includes cities like Spokane, WA, from 100 miles to 25 miles

Senator Murray: “No person deserves to be hassled or detained simply because they live or travel near our borders—not in Washington state, or any state in our country”

More from Spokane’s Spokesman-Review: ‘Immigration officials continue to operate at Spokane Greyhound bus station despite city ordinance’ – LINK

(Washington, D.C.) – Amid increasing scrutiny of immigration officials inhumane treatment of children and families, U.S. Senator Patty Murray (D-WA) reintroduced legislation to strengthen privacy protections in Washington state and all other border states by limiting the unreasonably large “border zone.”

“No person deserves to be hassled or detained simply because they live or travel near our borders—not in Washington state, or any state in our country,” Senator Murray said. “This bill would protect the rights of families and communities who happen to live or travel near our national borders, while still allowing federal law enforcement to do their jobs and keep our borders safe."

Senator Murray’s legislation would reduce the “border zone” from 100 miles to 25 miles in which Department of Homeland Security (DHS) officials may conduct vehicle stops and searches, and from 25 miles to 10 miles for DHS access to private property. Currently, Customs and Border Protection (CBP) officers have broad legal authority to stop vehicles without a warrant or even reasonable suspicion of wrongdoing within 100 miles of the border, and to search private land within 25 miles of the border. The 100-mile “border zone” covers a geographic area that includes nearly two-thirds of the population of the United States, including all or virtually all of Florida, Maine, New Hampshire, Massachusetts, Connecticut, New Jersey, and Delaware, as well as non-border cities such as Spokane, WA and Portland, OR.  Such an expansive “border zone” raises grave constitutional concerns, and at a time when CBP is struggling to handle the humanitarian crisis at the southern U.S. border, these ineffective checkpoints are a wasteful use of taxpayer resources.

The full text of the legislation is available HERE. A fact sheet on the legislation is available HERE.

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