If one piece of state legislation passes, the onus of checking immigration status will be on the local jailers. That’s because AB 1081 would require the jails to determine whether or not to compare fingerprints with the Department of Homeland Security’s Secure Communities.
Santa Cruz voted against resolutions of support for the legislation, a departure from the city’s long history as a so called ‘sanctuary city’ where resources are not used on deportation.
Some worry that using local police to enforce national immigration laws will deteriorate the relationship between the undocumented population and the police, which would leave the immigrants more prone to being victimized. Others feel that the program would create a broad mandate for deportation instead of focusing only on violent offenders.
From the Mercury News:
The City Council on Tuesday voted not to support state legislation that would allow local authorities to opt out of a federal immigration reporting-and-detention program opponents say is designed to deport undocumented residents rather than just violent offenders.
The 4-3 vote demonstrated a shift in the council majority that has been under way for the past several years, with city leaders now less likely to weigh in on controversial national issues in favor of focusing on problems within the city’s jurisdiction.
The decision not to support Assembly Bill 1081, which would require local jailing authorities to decide whether to participate in the Department of Homeland Security’s Secure Communities program, also stands in contrast to the city’s status for three decades as a so-called sanctuary city, where resources won’t be used toward deportation.
Read the full article here.