Civil Rights Task Force Highlights as of March 26, 2017

The Civil Rights task force has been focusing its efforts on the attacks on undocumented immigrants by the Trump administration.  Toward that end, we have been investigating the situation of U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) detainees at the Franklin County Jail, and what we can do to assist the American Civil Liberties Union attorneys who are currently advocating for them.

We are also working on a series of letter-writing campaigns in support of the Massachusetts Safe Communities Act (S.1305). This act, if passed, would create protections equivalent to those of a sanctuary city, but statewide. Specifically, it would:

Prohibit the use of information in Massachusetts databases (for example, the Registry of Motor Vehicles) in any federal registry based on religion, national origin or other protected categories.

Ensure due process for anyone detained on civil immigration violations in state or local facilities.

Prohibit state, local and campus police from participating in immigration enforcement activities.

Prohibit DHS from deputizing local officers (including sheriff’s department) as immigration agents.

In order to do this, we need to persuade Governor Baker (who has said that he intends to veto the legislation), Speaker of the House Robert DeLeo, and other members of the House leadership, to support or at least not obstruct the bill. We are developing a series of sample letters and call scripts for FCCPR members to use in this campaign.