City Under Siege: Trump Against Sanctuary Cities
President Trump signed an executive order on Wednesday to strip federal funds from sanctuary cities. As Philadelphia maintains its status as a "4th Amendment" or sanctuary city, the order will prevent cities such as Philadelphia from getting access to any federal grants, blocked by the Department of Homeland Security.
Maintaining his long-held position that the city will stand by its status on immigration enforcement regardless of state and federal funding, Mayor Kenney said he had no plans to change the city’s current policy. Without specific information on exactly what the cuts on federal funding entails, he stated he could not comment specifically but that the city would take advantage of “every opportunity we have to protect our citizens and protect our people who are living in our city."
Prior to this statement, as recently as Tuesday, the mayor stated that despite threats in funds, the city has expanded several services and programs, from the police force to the opioid task force initiatives, and that citizens should see the benefits of these expanded programs very soon.
With further restrictions on immigrations policies only looming in the future, from the building of Trump's wall (the second executive order signed Wednesday) to the ban on immigration from Muslim-majority countries, many are unsure what to expect.
Press Secretary Sean Spicer poke with reporters from Telemundo today in reference to "dreamers" the children a part of the Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA) program about the future of the children, but stated further plans were still unknown.
Whether they are safe in sanctuary cities or outside of the jurisdiction will be up to Trump's instruction to Immigration and Customs Enforcement.
Sanctuary cities do not hold undocumented immigrants in custody or transfer their information to ICE agents when being held for nonviolent crimes.
By maintaining its sanctuary status, Philadelphia maintains its position as a safe place for immigrants and the communities that welcome them. By ensuring that ICE officials are unable to detain individuals, supporters of the stance have stated that neighborhoods are safer if they deter police from detaining undocumented residents.
In the coming week, Trump is to sign more executive orders that tighten immigration policies.