The Young Democrats of Massachusetts voted unanimously to endorse H.3269/S.1305 – An Act to Protect the Civil Rights and Safety of All Massachusetts Residents, also known as ‘The Safe Communities Act’, filed by Representative Juana Matias and Senator Jamie Eldridge.
“I am excited that the Young Democrats of Massachusetts are joining the rapidly growing coalition of community, labor, legal, and faith-based organizations in support of immigrants and safe communities,” said Matthew Murray, YDMA President.
This legislation has three core components. First, it prohibits the state from supporting any Muslim registry. Law enforcement agencies and the Registry of Motor Vehicles would be prohibited from sharing or allowing access to databases or records based on national origin, religion, or other protected characteristics. Second, it ensures limited public safety resources are used to fight crime, not separate families. Local law enforcement would not be able to participate in federal immigration enforcement activities such as raids or detentions that are based solely on immigration status. Our public safety resources are so limited; we should let the federal government focus on enforcing its own policies while our local police officers focus on keeping us safe. Third, it prohibits collaboration agreements between the U.S Department of Homeland Security and local law enforcement that deputize local officers as immigration agents. When police become ICE agents immigrant victims and witnesses of crime are afraid to call the police for fear of deportation, which makes us all less safe.
This common sense legislation upholds constitutional standards and conforms to federal law. It would not prevent police from arresting or detaining a person in the course of a criminal investigation who happened to be an immigrant. The bill also contains several provisions ensuring Massachusetts continues to exchange pertinent information with the federal government.
“The Legislature should act swiftly on this bill so that Massachusetts can continue to lead the nation in support of immigrants, while also pushing back against Governor Baker’s Trumpian immigration agenda,” Murray concluded.