Catalyst Miami Asks County Commissioners to Stand with Immigrant Communities
February 6, 2017
Today Catalyst Miami joined dozens of local organizations in asking our County Commissioners to uphold Resolution 1008-13, which declines to honor non-mandatory federal immigration detainer requests for low-level offenses and unless federal government agrees to reimburse the County for the cost of honoring such requests. The Resolution, adopted by the Board of County Commissioners in 2013, saves taxpayer dollars, avoids unlawful detentions, protects families, and makes us all safer by building trust between immigrant communities and law enforcement. As an organization working towards a thriving Miami in which all members of our community have equal access to justice and protection and work together to achieve common goals, Catalyst Miami supports honoring Resolution 1008-13, as well as other policies that serve our common good.
A majority of Miami-Dade County residents are foreign born, and many among them are undocumented children and families, workers, business owners, students, activists, and people who contribute to the beautiful diversity of our community. This diversity is precisely what has earned Miami such a distinct image and alluring position among US cities. The Secure Communities Program, and similar arrangements between federal and county authorities, undermines the relationship between our immigrant community and our law enforcement agencies, which in turn decreases the public safety of our entire community. The Secure Communities Program, as demonstrated by a 2013 Fiscal Impact Analysis of Miami-Dade's Policy on Immigration Detainers, may cost our County's taxpayers an estimated $12.5 million a year, a cost that threatens to cripple services and programs that are vital to our community such as public libraries, after-school programs, first responder units, and more.
It is during times of hardship and adversity that true leadership must come together and heed the call to care for, defend, and protect the most vulnerable. This is such a time. Therefore, Catalyst Miami urges Mayor Gimenez, our Board of County Commissioners, and the rest of our elected leadership to join other cities and local governments throughout the country in unifying and doing whatever is necessary to protect all members of our communities. Catalyst Miami also reaffirms our commitment to continue to provide the kind of support and guidance that are urgently needed during this time of hardship and to strengthen our partnerships to have the most impact together.