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Sebastopol City Council Reaffirms Indivisible City Policies

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Sebastopol City Council Reaffirms Indivisible City Policies

Vote Continues Support of Longstanding Police Practice Regarding Immigration Status Enforcement

At its regularly scheduled meeting (Tuesday, February 21, 20017), the Sebastopol City Council voted to reaffirm its support of current Police Department policy not to engage in federal immigration enforcement.

In addition, the City Council voted in favor of supporting SB 54, the California Values Act, a bill pending before the California State Senate. The bill “protects the safety and well-being of all Californians by ensuring that state and local resources are not used to fuel mass deportations, separate families, or divide Californians on the basis of race, gender, sexual orientation, religion, immigration status, or national or ethnic origins,” said Mayor Una Glass in a letter to Senate President Pro-tem Kevin de León.

With tonight’s vote, the City Council in effect commits Sebastopol to the principles of the “Indivisible City” movement, which aims to protect undocumented but otherwise law-abiding citizens from federal immigration enforcement.

Under the Sebastopol Police Department’s policy, city residents will not be subject to law enforcement action based solely on immigration status, nor will local police resources be used to support federal enforcement of current immigration laws or executive orders.

“Sebastopol prides itself on being welcoming to people from all backgrounds, cultures, religions, orientations, abilities, and viewpoints, and encouraging their active participation in matters that affect us all.” said Mayor Una Glass. “We don’t want to create an environment where a person is reluctant to contact law enforcement for help. We are actually making our community safer by focusing our city’s limited resources on the enforcement of state and local laws and continuing to build collaboration between local leaders, law enforcement, and our community members.”

Jeffrey Weaver, Chief of the Sebastopol Police Department, echoes that sentiment. “It is the longstanding policy of this department to foster a collaborative relationship with the city of Sebastopol's residents including all members of its diverse communities, regardless of immigration status. We believe that fostering trust and respect among all our residents keeps all of us safer,” said Chief Weaver.

The Council affirmed its support of “indivisible city” principles in a formal resolution, the full text of which is available on the city’s website at www.cityofsebastopol.org

 


 

About 75 people attended the meeting.

22 members of the public commented on these items. 20 were in support and 2 were against.

The vote for the resolution reaffirming its support was 4 council members for, Carnacchi abstaining. 

The vote for the letter of support of SB 54 was 4 members for, Carnacchi against.

Link to staff report including draft resolution (there were some minor changes to the wording, but I will have to direct you to Assistant City Manager/City Clerk Mary Gourley, copied here, for the official word on those):

http://bit.ly/2l6pZFd

Link to video of meeting: http://bit.ly/2kqmjh7

Item starts at around the 1 hour and 30-minute mark. 

Submitted by Holly Hansen