California’s New ‘Sanctuary’ Battle Could Be Keeping Immigrant Data Away from ICE

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Students at Academia Avance Charter School in Highland Park in October 2017 rally in support of Senate Bill 54, California's so-called sanctuary state law. (Credit: Mel Melcon / Los Angeles Times)

Students at Academia Avance Charter School in Highland Park in October 2017 rally in support of Senate Bill 54, California’s so-called sanctuary state law. (Credit: Mel Melcon / Los Angeles Times)

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After California’s landmark “sanctuary state” law limited police from collaborating with federal immigration agents, one legislator wants to prevent local government from doing business with companies that he says play a role in the Trump administration’s “deportation machine.”

Legislation introduced Friday by Assemblyman Rob Bonta (D-Alameda) would prohibit cities and counties across the state from entering into new contracts with any company that sells, mines or analyzes personal information for U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement or U.S. Customs and Border Protection.

Bonta said he plans to expand the bill to include all federal immigration agencies and move to bar the state from signing contracts with companies that do business with them. But he argues the proposal will still be narrow enough in scope to prevent only deals with companies that collect data, provide support to immigrant detention facilities or engage in so-called extreme vetting programs, such as enhanced pre-screening or background checks.

“It is a way to put our public dollars where our values are,” Bonta said. “It is a way of putting pressure on vendors. They can decide to change their behavior or lose our business.”

Read the full story on LATimes.com.

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