WASHINGTON, D.C.(July 27, 2015) — OCA – Asian Pacific American Advocates strongly condemns anti-immigrant legislation H.R. 3009, the “Enforce the Law for Sanctuary Cities Act”.
H.R. 3009 would prevent local law enforcement agencies from receiving some federal grants if a Sanctuary city policy is in place. Sanctuary city policies help engender trust between communities and law enforcement by removing the threat of deportation, thereby resulting in more effective community policing. The House voted last Friday to pass this legislation.
“This bill places a higher priority on preserving bad policing practices than public safety. Studies have shown that increases in immigration have actually resulted in a decrease in crime, so the notion that immigrants cause crime is patently false. This legislation turns this false notion into a danger to not only the 11 million undocumented immigrants residing in this country, but to all Americans,” said Michael W. Kwan, OCA National President. “Our nation’s character will be measured less by how aggressively we can enforce archaic, outdated and unjust immigration laws than by how compassionately we treat the most vulnerable in our community.”
“This bill ‘doubles down’ on the harm by not only depriving local law enforcement agencies of the funding they desperately need to preserve public safety, but also by driving a wedge between local law enforcement and some of the most vulnerable members of our communities. Undocumented victims and witnesses of crime will be reluctant to come forward and cooperate with police out of fear of potential immigration consequences,” Kwan continued.
“This will result in driving undocumented fathers, mothers, sons and daughters; deeper into the shadows to live in constant fear. How long will Congress ignore their responsibility fix our broken immigration system by passing meaningful immigration reform? Instead, members of Congress have chosen to support xenophobic, anti-immigrant legislation that will make our communities less safe. This failure in leadership will not go unnoticed by the communities we serve and we will closely monitor support for this harmful legislation,” concluded Kwan.
OCA – Asian Pacific American Advocates is a national organization of community advocates dedicated to improving the social, political, and economic well-being of Asian Pacific Americans (APAs).