Dear Massachusetts activist,
On Friday, January 24th (at 11:00 am), the Massachusetts Legislature’s Joint Committee on Public Safety and Homeland Security will hold a hearing on legislation (H.3573 /S.1401) known as “Safe Communities Act.” But the legislation would endanger communities, not make them safer.
This “sanctuary state” legislation would restrict how law enforcement officers can communicate with federal immigration agents about criminal aliens. It would prohibit officers from notifying ICE agents about the release of illegal aliens and prevent agents from questioning those in custody without signed consent. It also would prohibit federal-state 287(g) agreements that allow officers to assist ICE in the deportation of criminal aliens. The 287(g) agreements with the Massachusetts Department of Corrections, the Bristol County Sheriff’s Office, and the Plymouth County Sheriff’s Department would be terminated under the bill. Finally, the legislation would prohibit officer from questioning people about their immigration status.
The Massachusetts Coalition for Immigration Reform (MCIR) is seeking your assistance in opposing the bill. We are organizing groups of individuals to testify against the bill, including victims of illegal-alien crime, legal and other experts, law enforcement personnel, legal immigrants, and veterans. MCIR also is seeking help with media and social media outreach, writing op-eds and spreading the word on talk radio. If you are interested in helping, please email MCIR’s John Thompson (firstname.lastname@example.org).
We empathically hope that, as an opponent to this legislation, you can attend Friday’s hearing and provide live testimony. (This is the Super Bowl of activism opposing illegal immigration.) But, if you cannot, then please contact the Joint Committee members in opposition to the bill. Instructions are provided below. Thank you in advance for your assistance.
What: Hearing on Sanctuary State Bills – H. 3573 and S. 1401
When: Friday, January 24th, 11 AM – 3 PM (or later if necessary)
Where: State House, Gardner Auditorium, 24 Beacon St, Boston, MA 02133
Contacting Joint Committee Members
Please email, then call Committee members. If you are a constituent, it is critical to mention it when calling.
First “copy and paste” the talking points below to the body of your email. Then type in the subject line: Joint Committee – Reasons to Defeat H.3573 /S.1401. Now place your name in the “To” field and copy the email addresses immediately below and paste in your “Bcc” field.
Michael.Moore@masenate.gov, email@example.com, Sonia.Chang-Diaz@masenate.gov, Mike.Barrett@masenate.gov, Mark.Montigny@masenate.gov, Joan.Lovely@masenate.gov, firstname.lastname@example.org, Harold.Naughton@mahouse.gov, Alan.Silvia@mahouse.gov, Thomas.Walsh@mahouse.gov, Bruce.Ayers@mahouse.gov, Paul.Tucker@mahouse.gov, Stephan.Hay@mahouse.gov, Chynah.Tyler@mahouse.gov, email@example.com, firstname.lastname@example.org, email@example.com, David.Vieira@mahouse.gov, David.Muradian@mahouse.gov, Peter.Durant@mahouse.gov
Example Talking Points for Emailing
I am a Massachusetts voter who wants you to vote NO on H.3573 /S.1401. Preventing police from communicating with ICE about criminal aliens is dangerous. Police may not know what convictions or other offenses are on a person’s record, or who that person really is, unless they communicate with ICE. Plus sanctuary cities aid violent gangs like MS-13 to boost their ranks and put innocent lives at risk.
It is false for the bill’s advocates to claim that sanctuary policies are needed to protect witnesses or crime victims who are unlawfully present. They are already protected under the federal “U” visa, and there is no research that suggests crime reporting increases in sanctuary jurisdictions. It’s also false to claim President Trump wants to make police enforce federal immigration law. Police are just being asked not to obstruct ICE.
Please do not play politics with our safety and well-being. Vote NO on H.3573 /S.1401.
Example Talking Points for Calling
“I am a Massachusetts voter who wants you to vote NO on H.3573 /S.1401. Preventing police from communicating with ICE about criminal aliens is dangerous. Police may not know what convictions or other offenses are on a person’s record, or who that person really is, unless they communicate with ICE. Please do not play politics with our safety and well-being. Vote NO on H.3573 /S.1401.”
Sen. Michael Moore (Chairman) – (617) 722-1485
Sen. Paul Feeney (Vice Chair) – (617) 722-1222
Sen. Sonia Chang-Diaz – (617) 722-1673
Sen. Michael Barrett – (617) 722-1572
Sen. Mark Montigny – (617) 722-1440
Sen. Joan Lovely – (617) 722-1410
Sen. Dean Tran – (617) 722-1230
Rep. Harold Naughton (Chairman) – (617) 722-2230
Rep. Alan Silvia (Vice Chair) – (617) 722-2230
Rep. Thomas Walsh – (617) 722-2676
Rep. Bruce Ayers – (617) 722-2230
Rep. Paul Tucker – (617) 722-2070
Rep. Stephan Hay – (617) 722-2220
Rep. Chynah Tyler – (617) 722-2450
Rep. Patrick Kearney – (617) 722-2014
Rep. Christina Minicucci – (617) 722-2582
Rep. Liz Miranda – (617) 722-2430
Rep. David Vieira (Ranking Minority) – (617) 722-2230
Rep. David Muradian, Jr. – (617) 722-2240
Rep. Peter Durant – (617) 722-2060
Thank you for your consideration.
Press release from MCIR (dated 11/22/19) —
Massachusetts Coalition for Immigration Reform (MCIR)
Reject the Sanctuary State Bill (HB 3573/SB 1401)
Nationwide, from 2011 to 2018, non-citizens, mostly illegal aliens, committed 667,000 drug offenses, 42,000 robberies, 25,000 homicides, 91,000 sex crimes, 213,000 assaults, 95,000 weapons offenses, and 81,000 auto thefts, according to a report from the US General Accountability Office (GAO). The GAO also found that the average criminal alien had been arrested seven times.
On January 24, the Massachusetts State Legislature’s Committee on Public Safety and Homeland Security will hold a hearing on a bill that would make Massachusetts a Sanctuary State. The “safe communities” bill (HB 3573/SB1401) would protect criminal aliens from the justice system.
Currently, police in most Massachusetts communities regularly exchange information about persons in custody with the Federal authorities, including the FBI and Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE). This bill is aimed at thwarting that cooperation.
In Massachusetts, criminal gangs routinely rob citizens, traffic narcotics, and perpetrate extortion. In one raid in 2015, Federal agents arrested 56 gang members in Boston, Chelsea, Everett, Lynn, Revere, and Somerville. The indictment alleged that several of those charged are responsible for the murders of five people, and attempted murder of at least 14. These gangs frequently recruit prospective members—typically 14 to 15 years old—inside Massachusetts high schools with significant populations of immigrants from Central America, according to law enforcement officials.
Many criminal aliens have avoided deportation by taking refuge in sanctuary jurisdictions, which in Massachusetts currently number 15 cities, including Cambridge and Boston. In the US as a whole, there are 39 sanctuary cities, 364 sanctuary counties, and four sanctuary states..
Sanctuary advocates claim—without evidence—that cooperation between ICE and police would scare undocumented immigrants from reporting crimes.
“Sanctuary policies have no impact whatsoever on relations between law enforcement and non-criminal aliens,” said John Thompson, a spokesperson for the Massachusetts Coalition for Immigration Reform (MCIR). “The only effect is to protect those who are already in custody from deportation.”
“If this bill is enacted, those responsible for its enactment will share responsibility for all crimes committed by persons who should have been deported but were sheltered by the Commonwealth of Massachusetts,” Thompson said.
Like most Americans, MCIR believes that non-citizens who commit serious crimes should be promptly deported and that local law enforcement officials should cooperate with the Federal government in identifying and removing criminal aliens. Reflecting this belief, the 1996 Illegal Immigration Reform and Immigrant Responsibility Act reasonably mandated the deportation of non-citizens convicted of crimes.
Although most undocumented immigrants are not criminals, it’s hard to enter and live illegally in the US without committing crimes. Many pay criminal gangs thousands of dollars for travel to and entry into the US, and sometimes more for forged or stolen documents. Illegal immigrants frequently commit identity theft in order to be employable. Their presence weakens laws that protect unskilled workers, e.g., laws setting minimum wages and minimal acceptable working conditions.
“If the authorities acted in accord with their responsibilities, the nation would be spared a large proportion of the offenses committed by illegal aliens,” said Thompson.
MCIR urges legislators to reject this bill and further urges voters to make their opinions on this issue known to legislators.
For any questions regarding this press release, please contact: