The Washington State Legislature is considering a bill that would protect immigrant workers in our state by preventing state agencies from engaging in immigration enforcement. The Keep Washington Working Act (KWW) would also prevent local police from enforcing immigration laws without due process.
We've called about this bill earlier in this session, but with the constitutional deadline for new legislation coming on April 17, we need to give this bill an extra push to get it across the finish line. This bill has already passed the Senate. We just need the House to pass it, and the Governor to sign it.
Pass SB 5497 to Keep Washington Working!
WHY DO WE NEED IT?
- 1 in 7 Washington workers—nearly one million people—are immigrants. Keep Washington Working would help them go to their jobs safely, without risking their families, homes, and lives in an arbitrary immigration arrest and/or deportation.
- KWW would help businesses across the state through strong worker protections, encouraging new businesses to relocate to the state.
- KWW would promote public safety by helping crime victims feel safe enough to call their local police department, thus relieving the terror and harm that immigrants and their families across Washington are currently enduring.
- We are a welcoming state that proudly stands against family separation and strongly believe no agency should collude in that inhumane process.
- In the first 3 months of 2017, ICE arrested over 5,000 noncitizens who posed no threat to public safety.
When local police are viewed as an extension of the immigration system, noncitizens are less likely to report crimes or appear as witnesses, making all of us less safe.
WHAT DOES IT DO?
- Restricts state agencies from aiding immigration enforcement. The state agencies include the Department of Licensing (DOL), the Department of Social and Health Services (DSHS), and the Washington State Patrol (WSP).
- Prevents local police from enforcing immigration laws, unless they have a judge's approval (Judicial Warrant or Subpoena).
- Protects crime victims, and lets local police focus on the community's own public safety priorities. Protects people from unwarranted immigration checks and immigration arrests by local safety officers. Requires the Attorney General to create policies that protect public and private facilities from ICE, including schools, hospitals, courthouses, and shelters.
- Prevents jails from holding anyone past the end of their sentence.
- Creates a workgroup comprised of labor, immigrant rights advocacy groups, business and government agencies in a statewide effort to provide stability to the workforce in the agricultural sector.
Action: Tell your State Representatives: Pass the Keep Washington Working Act
Please call both of your State Representatives and ask them to pass SB5497, the Keep Washington Working Act. You can find your Representatives' phone numbers here:
Alternately, you can call the Washington Legislative Hotline at 1-800-562-6000. The workers there will take your message for you and pass it to your Representatives and the Governor.
"Hi, my name is [NAME] and I'm one of Representative [NAME]'s constituents from [CITY, ZIP]. I'm asking you to pass SB 5497, Keep Washington Working.
Nearly one million Washingtonians – one in every seven people in this state – are immigrants, and they are an integral part of our communities and workforce that keep our state's economy booming. I believe that this bill protects vulnerable and marginalized communities, strengthens our economy, and maintains critical public safety resources. SB 5497 protects the privacy and civil rights of all Washington residents. Please support this bill so we can Keep Washington Working."
Background on KWW: https://yakimaresponsenetwork.org/community-support/advocacy/keep-washington-working/
Resist Trump Tuesday
TODAY, Tuesday, April 9, 2019
11:45 AM 1:30 PM
Henry M. Jackson Federal Building 915 2nd Avenue Seattle, WA 98104
Our featured speaker at our Resist Trump Tuesday rally this week is Aneelah Afzali of MAPS-AMEN. Aneelah will be talking about the No Ban Act that is being introduced in both the U.S. Senate and U.S. House of Representatives on April 10th.
For two years, the Muslim Travel Ban has deeply and adversely affected individuals and communities, tearing apart families. After the U.S. Supreme Court ruling allowing the latest version of the Muslim Ban, it's up to Congress to repeal the Muslim Ban and create new standards to stop such discriminatory bans in the future.
We will rally outside the Federal Bldg. with live music and our guest speaker from 11:45AM - 12:30PM, then we will go inside and meet with Sen. Murray's and Sen. Cantwell's staff from 12:30-1:30PM for a question and answer session as we do on the second Tuesday of every month. Come join us--all are welcome and we need your voice!