Most of the DACA recipients live in California, and the top Democrats in Sacramento have reached an agreement that appears to clear the way for California to become a sanctuary state for undocumented immigrants. The bill will likely be voted on later this week.
The bill would forbid state law enforcement officials from enforcing federal immigration law. Officials could no longer ask about someone’s immigration status or detaining individuals based on requests from the federal Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) agency. The measure would also demand California schools, hospitals, libraries and court houses to restrict enforcement of federal immigration laws on their premises, according to The Hill.
The authors of the bill, Gov. Jerry Brown and state Senate President Kevin de Leon, agreed earlier this week to the changes to the bill that Brown wanted. Brown told reporters: “This bill protects public safety and people who come to California to work hard and make this state a better place.”
De Leon went on to say the measure was needed to combat increased deportations likely to take place now that President Trump’s decision to end the DACA program, claiming: “With the president’s decision to rescind DACA and stepped up ICE incursions into our neighborhoods, SB 54 is needed now more than ever.”
The amendments mollified some law enforcement officials who had opposed the initial version of the bill. Ed Medrano, the chief of police in Gardena, Calif., and president of the California Police Chiefs Association, said the changes would allow law enforcement to better do its job.
The Police chief said the bill “addresses the significant public safety concerns we raised during this debate, and it reaffirms what we have held since the beginning, which is that California law enforcement should not be used to assist in mass deportations.” Will the bill pass?