Palm Beach County Should Be a Place of Equal Opportunity for Immigrants


In Palm Beach County, we know firsthand how the many contributions made by immigrants have shaped our community. Immigrants have been vital to sustaining and developing our county’s economic growth for years.

They should not have to live, travel or work with fear because our federal government has failed to fix its broken immigration system. Right now, local officials are forced to follow one-size-fits-all policies that burden local police and take their focus from community needs in order to support the federal government’s deportation agenda.

Palm Beach County does not have to perpetuate this broken system by having our local law enforcement officers bear the consequences of complying with a faulty and unconstitutional detainer system.

That’s why it is time that we start making local decisions that will keep immigrants and their families safe from overzealous ICE agents. Palm Beach County should be a place of opportunity for all.

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Your Message
Dear Palm Beach County Commission,

One in five people in Florida and Palm Beach County are immigrants. We know firsthand how their contributions have shaped our community. And yet, people in our community live in fear that they or their loved ones will be subjected to immigrant detention or put into the inhumane deportation pipeline.

Historically and especially during the COVID-19 pandemic, we are seeing essential and undocumented workers live in constant anxiety as they travel to work, preoccupied with providing for their families and hoping they won’t be stopped and asked about their immigration status. Unfortunately, the reality is that many times immigrants are stopped and detained for minor traffic violations or for simply being undocumented. An interaction that often leads to detention, being separated from their families, deportation, or even death at the hands of ICE.

Unfortunately, the reality is that many times immigrants, especially Black and brown immigrant communities, are disproportionately targeted. Now is the time to protect all immigrants and build trust between local governments and these communities.

As commissioner, there are actions you can take right now to protect immigrants, promote equality, and make our community safer for everyone. enhance public trust and community protection. I urge you to pass a local ordinance that includes the following policies to provide comprehensive protections for immigrants.

1. Prohibiting discrimination based on race, national origin, color, ability to speak English, and other factors that are specific to immigrant communities.
2. Protect crime victims and enhance community safety by creating clear processes for employing U visa forms for immigrants reporting crimes.
3. Creating an Immigrant Legal Assistance Fund to assist immigrants in unwarranted detention and deportation cases and ensure that immigrant parents are not separated from their children. As we know, minority communities are disproportionately policed. Black and brown communities need due process and access to legal representation.
4. Enhance transparency and oversight of any immigrant enforcement operations happening in your community and create avenues for community input on data and decisions being made relating to immigrants.
5. Decline to contract or enter into certain agreements with ICE.
6. Create processes to preserve immigrants’ rights for those subject to immigration detainers.

Palm Beach County should not be wasting already scarce resources to fund policies that target immigrants and should instead commit to continue to serve all members of our communities. It is time that we start making local decisions that will keep immigrants and their families safe.


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