Thursday, February 16, 2017

Roosevelt Island's NY State Senator Jose Serrano Introduces Bill To Make New York First Sanctuary State - Designed To Protect Refugees, Immigrants & Foreign Students From Trump Administration

On February 14, Roosevelt Island's NY State Senator Jose Serrano 

introduced a bill to make New York State a sanctuary state. According to this press release from Senator Serrano:
... in response to nationwide raids carried out by U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE), State Senators José M. Serrano (D-Manhattan/Bronx) and Brad Hoylman (D, WF-Manhattan) announced they have introduced two pieces of legislation that would protect refugees, immigrants, and foreign students from the Trump Administration’s ongoing discriminatory attacks against members of the immigrant community.

The New York State Liberty Act bill (S4075A) would make New York the first sanctuary state in the nation and protect immigrants from being victimized by unjust deportation procedures and racial profiling. The legislation would ensure that anyone in need of vital government services would not be unnecessarily questioned about their immigration status. The Liberty Act also prohibits local law enforcement agencies from stopping or arresting a person based on perceived immigration status or a suspected violation of federal immigration law, prevents them inquiring about the immigration status of persons contacting such agencies – including victims and witnesses – and provides the right to legal representation for all people facing deportation proceedings.

In addition, Senate Bill 4234 would prevent the State local governments from participating in any federal registry or database based upon race, color, creed, gender, sexual orientation, religion, or national or ethnic origin. Specifically, in order to ensure individuals and families remain willing to interact with state and local agencies without fear of potential entrapment, the legislation would prohibit state and local agencies from expending any resources to assist the federal government in the creation of a database with the purpose of tracking these particular groups.

"Our nation was built by generations of hardworking immigrants who came to America seeking new opportunities. New York State has always been the gateway to our nation and a leader in welcoming new Americans to our shores," said State Senator José M. Serrano. "Immigrants are the lifeblood of my district- and of this country and I will continue working to make New York a safe place for all who seek the American dream. Today, I urge leadership, and my colleagues in the New York State Senate to join myself and Senator Hoylman in fighting to protect the rights of all New Yorkers, regardless of immigration status."...
Click here for the full press release.

Governor Andrew Cuomo tweets:
On February 7, Gothamist reported:
In the face of President Donald Trump's threat to withhold funding from so-called "sanctuary cities"—cities including New York that limit communication between police, prisons, and federal immigration officials—Assembly Democrats on Monday passed legislation that would create similar protections for non-citizens across the state....
More on sanctuary city/illegal immigration issue in videos below.