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States and Courts Serve as Backstop to Some of Trump’s Immigration Extremism

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Washington, DC – Across the country, state and local governments are standing up to the Trump Administration’s hardline immigration policies and are charting an alternate pro-immigrant and pro-public safety policy direction.  Meanwhile, the courts are providing a backstop to some of Trump’s overreaches.

Below, we highlight several of these developments:

Rhode Island Gov. Gina Raimondo Steps Up for State DACA Recipients: Governor Gina Raimondo announced yesterday that Rhode Island, through the support of individuals and foundations, would pay the renewal fee for every state DACA recipient who is eligible to apply for DACA renewal by October 5, 2017. For current DACA recipients whose work permit and status expires on or before March 5, 2018, renewal applications have to be submitted and in the hands of DHS by October 5th – a new, arbitrary, and costly deadline for a quarter of the 800,000 DACA beneficiaries. In a statement announcing the news, Gov. Raimondo noted, “We’re not going to allow $495 to stand in the way of our neighbors’ dreams.

California Poised to Pass the Pro-Immigrant and Pro-Public Safety California Values Act: On Saturday, the California legislature approved SB54, the California Values Act. This legislation puts public safety first by ensuring that local law enforcement agencies do not become de facto immigration agents and that, as a result, local immigrant communities do not refuse to report crimes or act as witnesses. The bill now moves to Gov. Jerry Brown’s desk. Gov. Brown has given vocal support to the latest version of the legislation. The legislation is another marker of California’s determination to resist the Trump Administration’s overreaches. Attorney General Jeff Sessions has repeatedly tried to crack down on so-called “sanctuary cities” — the Administration deems the entire state of California to be one — and it was a San Francisco lawsuit that blocked Trump’s January executive order against such jurisdictions. California leaders are filing two lawsuits against Trump’s decision to end DACA / deferred action for Dreamers, and the state has approved $30 million in aid for DACA recipients as they face an uncertain future.

Chicago Lawsuit Leads to Nationwide Injunction Against Trump Administration’s Attempts to Force “Sanctuary Cities” to Cooperate on Immigration Enforcement: On Friday, a federal judge in Chicago blocked the Trump Administration’s attempt to require that jurisdictions cooperate with their immigration enforcement efforts in order to receive DOJ public safety grants. As Governing reported, “U.S. District Judge Harry Leinenweber held that Chicago has shown a ‘likelihood of success’ in its arguments that U.S. Attorney General Jeff Sessions exceeded his authority in imposing new standards governing Edward Byrne Memorial Justice Assistance Grants across the country. He also said Mayor Rahm Emanuel’s administration has shown the city could suffer ‘irreparable harm’ in its relationship with the immigrant community if it were to comply with the U.S. Department of Justice’s new standards. ‘Once such trust is lost, it cannot be repaired through an award of money damages, making it the type of harm that is especially hard to rectify.’”

U.S. District Judge and Advocates Push Back Against Trump Administration’s Arbitrary October 5 DACA Renewal Deadline: Last Thursday, U.S. District Judge Nicholas Garaufis called the administration’s “arbitrary” October 5 deadline for DACA renewals destructive, and encouraged the Administration to extend it. National Partnership for New Americans echoed these sentiments in a letter co-signed by business leaders to Acting Secretary Duke, calling the deadline “impractical and unworkable,” and imploring that the Trump Administration extend the DACA renewal deadline to January 5, 2018.

Follow Frank Sharry and America’s Voice Education Fund on Twitter: @FrankSharry and @AmericasVoice

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