An exchange with Das Williams (D-35th District) re: CA Trust Act, Secure Communities

Our response:

Thank you Assemblyman Williams.

We do hope that you reconsider your opposition to the CA Trust Act, AB1081, and vote in a manner which is beneficial to the interests of your constituents in the district. We are confident, based on the tone of your last email, that this may possibly be the case.

Indeed, we are sure that you hate to see unlicensed drivers, victims of domestic abuse, and other hard-working non-criminals and nonviolent offenders in our neighborhoods see their fingerprints, addresses, and bio-metric data get turned over to federal immigration authorities as a result of Secure Communities (S-COMM), just as we do. We feel that SCOMM represents an example of living, breathing legislative aggression against the undocumented communities who comprise a major portion of our communities — our family, friends, loved ones, co-workers, and neighbors. Like the ACLU of Southern California, the California Immigrant Policy Center (CIPC), the National Day Labor Organizing Network (NDLON), and countless other advocates for the rights of undocumented residents across our state, we view the CA Trust Act as a needed remedy to the major problems with this DHS-ICE program.

Anxiety in our communities regarding Police-Migra collaboration is purely natural, especially when looked at in light of the recent FOIA discoveries of the significant number of innocents who have been caught in the crossfire of S-COMM’s indiscriminate dragnet .

As NDLON states in their recent press release:
“The emails—which were obtained as a result of Freedom of Information Act litigation brought by the National Day Laborer Organizing Network, the Center for Constitutional Rights, and the Cardozo Immigration Justice Clinic—show that people who are unable to satisfactorily identify themselves at drivers’ license checkpoints, but are not suspected of any criminal conduct, are nonetheless processed for deportation through Secure Communities.”

Many of us were present at Plaza Park in Oxnard on the afternoon of May 1, 2010, when you stirringly stated your support for the struggle against SB1070, the notorious AZ law which declared “open season” on migrantes in that state. S-COMM similarly opens the door to discretionary arrests and incidents of racial profiling.

We sincerely hope that you do the right thing — that you further consider the CA Trust Act, and that you further research the effects of the S-COMM overlapping of federal and local agencies’ duties regarding immigration enforcement (“PoliMigra partnership”), especially but not limited to the automatic data-sharing aspects of the law.

It’s not too late to make the right decision for your constituents and our communities. We simply want an end to the separation of families and deportation of our neighbors and loved ones.

with appreciation,

Colectivo Todo Poder al Pueblo