Dear WISDOM Leaders and Friends:
There is a lot happening in our state legislature. Some of it is bad, and some is promising. Your communication with your representatives about any of it can make a difference.
Two things to oppose:
• Please let your representatives know that you oppose AB450 – the “Sanctuary Cities” bill. AB450 is designed to punish local communities that make the decision to keep local law enforcement out of the immigration enforcement business. Any community that has a policy calling for law enforcement NOT to inquire about immigration status in the course of their regular duties would lose state aid money. AB450 is a very bad idea for a lot of reasons, notably including that law enforcement doesn’t like it. To do their jobs effectively, they need the trust of ordinary people. If local police are extensions of Immigration, people are much less likely to report crimes or to cooperate with police.
• You can also let them know that you oppose the “Impound Bill.” This bill calls for the cars of people driving without a license to be taken away. To retrieve the car, the person would have to pay an additional fine. The Impound Bill is supposedly to ensure that repeat drunk drivers cannot stay on the road. The way it is written, however, would do far more to hurt poor people and immigrants.
Two things you can tell them you support:
• Let your representative know that you support AB657. This is a bill that would expand the budget for TAD programs by an additional $2 million per year. The bill was introduced very recently, and it has very broad, bi-partisan support. There will be more information on this soon. It seems very promising.
• Finally, you can ask your representative to co-sponsor LRB 3305. This is a bill that would support the expansion of “sober living houses.” These houses, which demand a lot of responsibility of their residents, are especially helpful to people making a transition back from jail or prison, and for people who have been diverted (e.g. through TAD-like programs) and are trying to stay on track. Representatives willing to co-sponsor the expansion can contact Representative Melissa Sargent.
You can find your legislator here.