SB 54 signature is key step in fight against cruel deportations

Oct. 5, 2017 – Today, in response to Gov. Jerry Brown’s signing of the California Values Act, (SB 54 by Sen. de Leon), a broad statewide coalition of immigrant and civil rights organizations, listed below, issued the following statement.

As we celebrate today’s signature, we honor the immigrant community members who bravely stood up and spoke out against painful deportations – and defended the principle that all people should be treated fairly, no matter what they look like or where they were born.

The Trump administration, in its zeal to deport millions, is turning police and sheriffs into deportation agents. This has broken up families, opened the door to civil rights violations, burdened local resources, and further undermined confidence in law enforcement.

The California Values Act will challenge this xenophobic agenda. The new law will advance protections for immigrants in communities across the state, ending a number of shameful local deportation practices altogether and setting limits on other abuses.

SB 54 makes strides toward recognizing the value of rehabilitation in the context of a justice system which is all too often unjust. We are eager to implement these protections and to build on the foundation they create.

We also recognize that California must do much more to embrace the humanity of all who call our state home, including Californians criminalized by racially biased systems of mass incarceration. We will keep fighting to raise the bar for due process and equal treatment statewide.

And to those Sheriffs who aligned with anti-immigrant forces during this campaign, we remind you: immigrants are a vital and inseparable part of California’s heart and soul.

Organizations issuing statement: ACLU of California, Asian Americans Advancing Justice – California, California Immigrant Policy Center, Immigrant Legal Resource Center, National Day Laborer Organizing Network, PICO California, Alliance San Diego, American Friends Service Committee – US/Mexico Border Program, American Immigration Lawyers Association – San Diego, Center for Community Action and Environmental Justice, Central Coast Alliance United for a Sustainable Economy (CAUSE), Centro Laboral de Graton, Chula Vista Partners in Courage, Clergy and Laity United for Economic Justice – Ventura County, Comite VIDA – Sonoma County, Ensuring Opportunity Campaign to End Poverty in Contra Costa, Food Empowerment Project, Friends Committee on Legislation of California, Immigration Task Force of the California Nevada Annual Conference of the United Methodist Church, Indivisible: Conejo, Interfaith Movement for Human Integrity, Mujeres Unidas y Activas (MUA), Pomona Economic Opportunity Center, San Bernardino Community Service Center Inc, San Diego Immigrant Rights Consortium. South Bay People Power, Southern California Coalition for Occupational Safety & Health, The Jus Semper Global Alliance, VIDAS Legal Services, Voices for Progress Education Fund.

www.caimmigrant.org