GLAAD response to President Trump’s pardon of Joe Arpaio, a criminal known for inmate abuses, unjustified arrests, and racial profiling

NEW YORK - GLAAD, the world’s largest LGBTQ media advocacy organization, today voiced outrage over President Trump’s pardon of former Arizona Sheriff Joe Arpaio. Arpaio is infamous for his previous conviction of issuing racist, anti-immigrant policies in Maricopa County even after being ordered by a judge to stop racial targeting and detaining undocumented immigrants without a legal basis. Arpaio also gained national attention for his inhumane Tent City jail, which he boasted was a “concentration camp," and his relentless campaign to terrorize Latinx communities by using racial profiling for immigration enforcement.

"This pardon is yet the latest example that bigotry and intolerance are core pillars of Trump's Presidency," said Monica Trasandes, Director of Spanish Language and Latinx Media & Representation. "Trump is sending a chilling message of support for racial profiling, inhumane inmate abuses, and unlawful defiance for the federal court system. The LGBTQ community must stand with all immigrants and communities of color as we fight back against the dangerous and discriminatory agenda of the Trump Administration."

GLAAD condemned President Trump's defense of Joe Arpaio this Tuesday during his rally in Phoenix, Arizona where he stopped just short of announcing a pardon for Arpaio.

According to the Williams Institute, an estimated 267,000 adult undocumented immigrants identify as LGBTQ (Latinx, Black, Asian, and Muslim). Joe Arpaio’s anti-immigrant ideology has created an environment in Arizona that increased the profiling, deportation, and detention of immigrants, including LGBTQ immigrants. Transgender immigrants are often disproportionately detained in immigration centers and suffer a higher rate of abuse.

BACKGROUND INFORMATION: Former Arizona Sheriff Joe Arpaio’s Racist and Anti-Immigration Record

  •  Bragged that he had built a concentration camp. "I already have a concentration camp...It's called tent city."

  • Found guilty of criminal contempt of court for his willful defiance of "orders to stop detaining undocumented immigrants without legal basis."

  • Engaged in racial profiling in order to detain undocumented immigrants.

  • Insisted President Obama's birth certificate is forged and says he will not give up trying to prove it.

  • Investigations show Arpaio and his deputies "failed to investigate or conducted only the sketchiest of inquiries into hundreds of sex crimes between 2005 and 2007, investigations by Arizona law enforcement agencies have shown. Many of those cases involved molested children."

  • Branded by The New York Times Editorial Board as "America's Worst Sheriff."