WASHINGTON – Yesterday, Representative Steve King (IA-4) introduced “Ending the Sanctuary Capitol Policy Act of 2015,” legislation allowing for Capitol Police to ask protesters about their immigration status while on Capitol grounds. Humanitarian organization Church World Service announced its firm opposition to this bill, citing concerns that an anti-immigrant law of this nature would lead to discrimination and racial profiling of immigrant rights activists who come to Capitol Hill to advocate for just immigration policies.
“This bill is just another example of the extreme, anti-immigrant legislation that has become commonplace in this Congress,” said the Rev. John L. McCullough, CWS President and CEO. “Rep. King’s bill would promote discrimination and racial profiling at our nation’s capitol. Many faith leaders in our network have accompanied our immigrant brothers and sisters as they educate legislators on the urgent need for just immigration policies that reunite, rather than separate, families. Legislation such as Rep. King’s recent bill promotes discrimination and creates suspicion and mistrust between law enforcement officials and immigrant communities. This is unacceptable anywhere, and especially in our nation’s Capitol. Such legislation flies in the face of our values as people of faith and as Americans.”
CWS urges all members of the U.S. House of Representatives to reject this bill and any similar legislation that would discriminate against immigrants and force local law enforcement officers to serve as de facto immigration agents. The CWS network stands ready to work with members in both the House and Senate to defeat anti-immigrant legislation, and to instead address sustainable solutions that would fix our out-dated immigration system, renew our criminal justice system and promote community-policing efforts.