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Legislation Approved to Outlaw State’s Sanctuary Cities

( – A sanctuary city is a place where local authorities do not cooperate with federal immigration officials. While North Carolina does not explicitly have a statewide sanctuary policy, it doesn’t outlaw it either. That could change in the coming months.

On April 30, the North Carolina Senate Committee on Judiciary voted to pass House Bill 10. Rep. Destin Hall (R) sponsored the legislation. He spoke at a committee meeting where he told the senators that it’s normal for Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) agents to place a detainer on immigrants who are arrested. The Republican also pointed out that nearly 100 sheriffs in the state already voluntarily cooperate with ICE detainers.

The Carolina Journal reported that Hall also explained there are a “small number of sheriffs […] who don’t honor ICE detainers.” That means they allow the migrants to be released from custody rather than letting ICE hold them in jail. Some of those sheriffs “don’t even communicate with ICE at all,” he said. The state representative lashed out, saying it was ridiculous that the legislature even has to pass a bill mandating law enforcement agencies must work together to keep people safe. He went on to say that “their first goal should be public safety.”

Citizens were also given an opportunity to speak at the hearing. One of them, Andressia Ramirez, was the daughter of an undocumented immigrant who wore a shirt that read, “Stop HB10.” She said she created an emergency plan with her mom about what to do if her mother was ever arrested for driving without a license.

Senator Danny Britt (R) said the legislation would not apply to people “stopped for minor traffic offenses.” He expressed support for those migrants, saying that without them, the agriculture and construction industries would shut down. The conservative lawmaker explained that the legislation would target “violent offenders who have been deported for violent acts.”

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