Michael Lacey and Jim Larkin of the civil and human rights organization, the Frontera Fund, applaud the ruling by Judge William Orrick to block de-funding of sanctuary cities. Unfortunately, the Department of Justice announced they will fight that injunction.
Larkin and Lacey say this is the governments way to persecute undocumented immigrants, and they fear President Trump will continue to look for ways restrict federal funds for so-called “sanctuary cities”
The term ” sanctuary city” references cities that refuse to share information about undocumented immigrants with federal authorities, thereby making it difficult to be tracked down and deported. Some of these cities have enacted laws expressly prohibiting city officials and law enforcement officers to collaborate with federal authorities for deportation of illegal immigrants.
Not that undocumented immigrants cannot be detained in the “sanctuary cities” for deportation. Indeed they can, but when that happens it occurs without the cooperation of the local authorities. Read more: Jim Larkin | LinkedIn and Jim Larkin | Crunchbase
San Francisco, California, is one of the cities with specific legislation that prevents municipal workers from cooperating with federal authorities for deportation of illegal immigrants. In Chicago , another of the “sanctuary cities”, police have banned asking the status of people.
Furthermore, in New York City, Mayor Bill de Blasio said that if necessary, the city will eliminate their year-end database with names of hundreds of thousands of undocumented immigrants who have received a card for municipal identification thus preventing the government from identifying and deporting undocumented immigrants.
California Bolsters Immigration Protection
Recently, a “sanctuary status” bill (SB-54) was approved by California lawmakers. The initiative seeks to restrict the cooperation of local and state law enforcement with immigration authorities.
The initiative will now be considered by Governor Jerry Brown, who announced his support. Michael Lacey and Jim Larkin say California is also channeling resources for legal aid for immigrants, as well as making it difficult for businesses to disclose migratory status.
Still, say Larkin and Lacey there is much work to be done. The Texas House of Representatives, whichis dominated by Republicans, approved a bill that prohibits any sanctuary cities in that state.
The law also gives law enforcement explicit power to impose federal immigration rules on any detainee and threatens to punish officials who refuse to cooperate. Texas is the first state where law enforcement officials could face termination of their jobs when failing to enforce US immigration laws.
Organizations like the Frontera Fund continue to fight back against the administration for violation of immigrant rights. Established in 2014, the grassroots organization, the Frontera Fund advocates for immigrant and migrant workers civil rights. Founders, Michael Lacey and Jim Larkin founded the organization with funds won in a lawsuit against the infamous Sheriff Joe Arpaio.
Larkin and Lacey, through the Frontera Fund, lend a voice to the vulnerable and advocate for people to be treated humanely. They work to bring a positive change, including full civil rights and democracy for immigrant communities.