‘Sanctuary City’ legislation introduced in L.A.

Snow-capped mountains are seen in the distance behind the downtown skyline on March 2, 2023 in Los Angeles, California where a new cold system brought hail and snow to unusually low elevations for the mountains in Southern California. (Photo by Frederic J. BROWN / AFP) (Photo by FREDERIC J. BROWN/AFP via Getty Images)
Snow-capped mountains are seen in the distance behind the downtown skyline on March 2, 2023 in Los Angeles, California where a new cold system brought hail and snow to unusually low elevations for the mountains in Southern California. (Photo by Frederic J. BROWN / AFP) (Photo by FREDERIC J. BROWN/AFP via Getty Images)

OAN Geraldyn Berry
UPDATED 11:26 AM PT – Wednesday, March 8, 2023

Los Angeles is set to become a “sanctuary city” after a legislation was introduced on Tuesday to “permanently enshrine sanctuary policies into city law.” 

The motion was introduced by Council members Eunisses Hernandez, Hugo Soto-Martinez and Nithya Raman.

Council member Soto-Martinez noted that more than 1 out of 3 people who live in Los Angeles are immigrants.

“Los Angeles is a city of immigrants,” Hernandez said. “As the daughter of two Mexican immigrants myself, I know how important and overdue these protections are to our community members. Internal policies that can be changed from one day to the next are not enough. Our undocumented residents deserve safety and security. It is long past time for Los Angeles to permanently codify protections for our undocumented community members into city law.”

According to the motion, municipal staff would be tasked with creating an ordinance that would codify a 2017 directive made by the then-mayor Eric Garcetti, which forbade the use of any public assets, personnel, or resources in any federal immigration enforcement.

The motion would specifically order the city to forbid asking someone about their immigration status or gathering information about it, conducting investigations or enforcement actions related to that status, granting immigration authorities access to any non-public spaces, including jails, without a valid search or arrest warrant, and granting federal immigration authorities access to city databases or any individual’s personal information or other data.

It is noted that the Los Angeles Police Department has prohibited participation in immigration enforcement since 1979. Its policies forbid contact with people solely based on their immigration status and forbid immigration agents from having access to jails or inmates unless they have a valid federal warrant.