New Immigration Bills Introduced in Maryland House

Sara Bennett

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Maryland state lawmakers are considering legislation that pushes back on the Trump administration’s immigration policy. The Supporting All Families Everywhere (SAFE) Act, or House Bill 1461, would clarify the roles and responsibilities of local law enforcement agencies.

It is supported throughout the House, but it also has opposition from some people who say it’s not needed because police need to check people for ties to terrorism or gangs. Parkside junior, Hayleigh Turner says “Law enforcement needs to do their job and make sure that those who are breaking the law face necessary consequences.” On the other hand, Julia Mohr says, “ These bills are highly beneficial to our society because law enforcement agencies need clarification on their roles and responsibilities.” Lawmakers said the SAFE Act intends to give immigrant communities peace of mind. The intended purpose of the SAFE Act is to ensure that people feel safe in their community, and that they feel safe going to their local law enforcement officers.

The SAFE Act would require federal law enforcement to get a warrant in order to take someone into custody. It prohibits creating an immigration registry, it establishes safe areas, like schools, and it prohibits using state or local jail facilities to hold those that have been taken into custody. This would put an end to programs under which jail officers are trained by the federal government to investigate possible immigration violations among inmates. One significant provision of the act turns a Maryland state attorney general’s legal opinion into law. Another bill, HB 1549, would require local governments to fully obey other federal immigration agents. It also puts a block on local governments from restricting information on immigrants. Local governments must implement certain requirements in order to receive specific funding from the state. These bills look to ensure local governments will work with federal agents when it comes to illegal immigrants.

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New Immigration Bills Introduced in Maryland House