Rep. Barros’ Rhode Island Values Act heard in committee
STATE HOUSE – Rep. Jean Philippe Barros’ (D-Dist. 59, Pawtucket) legislation (2017-H 6021) that would enhance community protections during ICE enforcement actions by identifying certain community locations, defined as “sensitive locations” in the bill, that would require a judicial warrant for immigration agents to access the premises was heard before the House Committee on Judiciary last night.
“With many folks worried these days and a lot of parents worried that while walking their kids to school, ICE might just pull them over and take them in without their families and loved ones being notified, this legislation became necessary. During the time these individuals are in those sensitive locations, they have the opportunity to call to get their affairs in order, to get a lawyer, and to get some legal advice as to what they should be doing if they are taken into custody. Families should not be worrying about their loved ones if they disappear without notice due to being apprehended by immigration authorities,” said Representative Barros.
The legislation states that Rhode Island schools, places of worship, health facilities and courts shall not grant access to their premises for any federal immigration authority to investigate, detain, apprehend, or arrest any individuals for potential violations of federal immigration laws unless the federal immigration authority presents a judicial warrant. Only designated or authorized personnel of the establishment may review the warrant and consent to access of the premise to the federal authorities.
The law would not apply when the federal immigration authority is acting in response to a specific act of terrorism, national security threat or when there is the threat of imminent danger of violence to the United States. If this exception to the law is invoked, the federal immigration authority must provide prior notice of the anticipated action to the Rhode Island Attorney General.
The House Judiciary Committee voted to hold the bill for further study.
For more information, contact:
Andrew Caruolo, Publicist
State House Room 20
Providence, RI 02903