A surge in serious crimes by illegal immigrants—many repeat offenders—who have been shielded by sanctuary laws isn’t stopping legislators in Massachusetts from quietly pushing for a measure that would protect undocumented aliens statewide.
The move could not have come at a worse time, as the nation reels from a series of atrocious crimes committed by illegal aliens who long ago should have been deported. Instead, they were protected by sanctuary laws despite their criminal histories and illegal status in the U.S. A recent example is the gruesome July 4 San Francisco murder of a young woman by an illegal immigrant thug with seven felony convictions. The Mexican national had been deported five times.
Like a number of municipalities across the nation, San Francisco’s sanctuary law protects illegal aliens and bans any sort of cooperation with federal authorities, even when the perpetrator is guilty of a serious offense. In fact, in the recent San Francisco case Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) had issued a detainer for the illegal alien, 45-year-old Francisco Sanchez, but local authorities did not honor it and instead released him. San Francisco’s mayor defended the policy after the senseless murder, saying that it “protects residents regardless of immigration status and is not intended to protect repeat, serious and violent felons.”
More than 200 cities, counties, and states across the U.S. protect criminal aliens from deportation by refusing to comply with ICE detainers or otherwise impede information exchanges between their employees, according to the Center for Immigration Studies. Among them is Cook County in Illinois, Miami-Dade County in south Florida and practically the entire state of California. In Massachusetts only a couple of cities—Amherst and Boston—have sanctuary measures in place and some state lawmakers want to broaden the protection.
The legislature is looking to pass a measure that will offer sanctuary protections to illegal aliens statewide. If approved, all public agencies in Massachusetts will be banned from divulging information on illegal immigrants to federal authorities and state employees will be forbidden from denying any taxpayer-funded assistance, benefits or participation in public programs to those in the country illegally. “This shall include, but not be limited, to education or training, employment, health, welfare, rehabilitation, housing or other services, whether provided directly by the recipient of funds of the commonwealth or provided by others through contracts or other arrangements with the recipient,” according to language in the proposed law.
The measure also offers illegal immigrants assistance in gaining legal status in the U.S., possibly citizenship. “It shall be the policy of the commonwealth to support and encourage any and all residents in their attempts to obtain lawful immigration status and, if they choose, citizenship. Nothing in this section shall prohibit an agency or employee of the commonwealth or recipient of commonwealth funds from requesting the voluntary provision of information or documentation regarding immigration status to the extent necessary to assist an individual in resolving his or her immigration question when such assistance is part of a program’s activities and is consistent with this subsection.”
The bill was introduced by state Representative Byron Rushing, a Boston Democrat who claims his priorities are human and civil rights. The civil rights activist/politician should read this disturbing investigative series in his hometown newspaper about illegal immigrant sex offenders who have been released instead of deported. They include convicted rapists, child molesters and kidnappers. One law enforcement agency calls them “the worst of the worst.” Just a few weeks ago, another local news report revealed that two illegal immigrants charged with drug-related crimes are suspected of murdering a grandmother in Lawrence, which is about 29 miles from Boston.