(Anaheim, Calif., 10/7/13) â€“ The California chapter of the Council on American-Islamic Relations (CAIR-CA) today applauded Governor Jerry Brown's efforts to support immigrant rights by signing the TRUST Act (AB 4) into law this past Saturday.
The law, sponsored by Assembly Member Tom Ammiano (D-San Francisco), limits the state's compliance with Secure Communities, an embattled program that allows the Department of Homeland Security to access fingerprints taken by local police, to screen detained individuals for immigration status checks, and to request that law enforcement agencies hold them if they are believed to be undocumented. The program has resulted in thousands of unfair, costly detentions of immigrants in local jails for deportation purposes.
â€œThis law is a major step forward toward comprehensive immigration reform,â€ said CAIR-Greater Los Angeles Area Executive Director Hussam Ayloush. “There must be a sense of trust between communities and their local law enforcement agencies, and this law will help rebuild that trust.”
Additionally, the governor signed several other key immigrant rights bills over the weekend.
SEE: Trust Act Signed in California to Limit Deportation Program (Huffington Post)
The TRUST Act was one of two bills that California Muslims advocated for at CAIR-CA's second-annual Muslim Day at the Capitol (MDAC) earlier this year in Sacramento. At the daylong event, more than 150 California Muslims urged their lawmakers to support civil rights for all by passing the TRUST Act.
CAIR-CA has historically supported the Trust Act, and has worked alongside immigrant rights' groups to advocate for its passage. At its first-ever MDAC program in 2012, California Muslims advocated for the TRUST Act, then known as SB 1081. That bill passed both houses, but was subsequently vetoed by Governor Brown. This year's compromise version of the bill gives law enforcement much more leeway to respond to immigration “detainer” requests, while setting a minimum standard to ensure that those with most low-level, non-violent offenses are not wastefully held for deportation purposes.
CAIR is America's largest Muslim civil liberties and advocacy organization. Its mission is to enhance the understanding of Islam, encourage dialogue, protect civil liberties, empower American Muslims, and build coalitions that promote justice and mutual understanding.