City Council is taking a stance on ICE raids
Councilwoman Maria Quiñones-Sánchez and Councilwoman Helen Gym will introduce a resolution Thursday condemning the national raids on undocumented immigrants, which have resulted in the apprehension of at least 121 Central Americans since Jan. 2.
Immigration policy is crafted by the federal government. Local municipalities can control certain factors — like the degree to which local law enforcement will cooperate with federal immigration agents — but beyond that, any gesture from City Hall takes the form of a symbolic resolution. Both Gym and Quiñones-Sánchez feel it is important to take a citywide stance.
"Obviously, the federal government is moving on its own processes, but it's really important for local officials to register their concerns," Gym told AL DÍA earlier this month at a protest outside Immigration and Custom Enforcement's office.
The resolution will be introduced just two days after 275 local clergy signed an open letter calling the Department of Homeland Security and the Obama Administration calling to end to the raids.
“As the Councilwoman for a district with a high immigrant population I condone these raids in the City of Brotherly Love and Sisterly affection and urge the President of the United States to establish a comprehensive national policy to protect and preserve our immigrant families," Quiñones-Sánchez said in a statement.
In the same statement, Gym added that “mass deportations are terrorizing families and have no place in this country. Thousands of unaccompanied children who fled terror in their homelands are being shamefully neglected by our federal authorities. We cannot continue to neglect the people who came here seeking refuge. We must commit to treating them as the refugees they are—not as criminals.”