Earlier this year, we reported on a woman who was riding a Greyhound bus and was asked to exit after she couldn’t provide proper identification documents. The encounter caught on video and people were appalled. Ahe wasn’t the first person that immigration officers detained on a bus, and now it turns out she won’t be the last.
Greyhound has given border patrol agents permission to board their buses and randomly ask people for identification.
— Laurine League (@LiLDELain) April 24, 2018
Greyhound, which serves every state in the country and provides an inexpensive form of transportation, says they are complying with the law. The company is allowing agents to ask for proof of citizenship from passengers without warrants.
“Greyhound is required to comply with the law,” a Greyhound spokesperson said last month after the Fort Lauderdale incident went viral. “We are aware that routine transportation checks not only affect our operations, but our customers’ travel experience and will continue to do everything legally possible to minimize any negative experiences.”
While Greyhound may be complying with the law, they’re also breaking it.
Well…I saw some racist profiling during my trip on a #Greyhound bus. I can just add another reason why I won't be riding a Greyhound again.
— Frank Perry (@realfrankster) April 24, 2018
The American Civil Liberties Union states that asking random people to show I.D. without proper reasoning is against the Fourth Amendment.
“The starting place is to not give your consent,” Jordan Wells, an attorney for the New York Civil Liberties Union, told Huffington Post. “If Border Patrol then says, ‘You know what, we actually don’t even need their consent, we’re going to just do this stuff,’ that would violate the Constitution. But we the public don’t get to have that conversation about whether this is constitutional when Greyhound gives away the game by just saying, ‘We consent, so it’s OK.'”
People on Twitter say they’ll be boycotting Greyhound, but some people don’t have any other way to travel.
Greyhound Is Choosing To Let Border Patrol Demand Its Passengers’ Papers
The company says it’s following the law. The ACLU says it’s consenting to warrantless searches it could refuse. I WILL NOT BE USING GREYHOUND BECAUSE OF THIS!
— anna rather (@annamoxie) April 24, 2018
“Border Patrol routinely racially profiles and violates the rights of bus passengers in Rochester. It’s hard for me to find a safe way to travel home over the holidays,” Haydi Torres, a University of Rochester student and leader with UR Dreamers, said according to the ACLU. “Since my freshman year, I’ve always relied on classmates and professors to provide a ride for me to go visit my family. It is time for Greyhound, Trailways, and all bus companies to stand up for their passengers and refuse to facilitate this abuse.”