Gov Inslee Signs New State Sanctuary Bill. Washington joining Oregon and California in new Bill
— Washington State
Washington has become the latest state on the West Coast to enact a broad sanctuary protections that restrict all local and state authorities from asking about people's immigration status. Gov. Jay Inslee signed the measure Tuesday implementing the new rules, which rank among the strongest statewide mandates in the nation. California and Oregon have similar laws. The move comes as President Donald Trump's administration has cracked down on immigration by increasing migrant detentions and attempting to cancel the Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals program.
Under the new Washington state law, local law enforcement agencies are broadly prohibited from asking about immigration status or place of birth unless directly connected to a criminal investigation, and both local jails and state prisons are prohibited from complying with voluntary "immigration holds" requested by federal authorities, or from notifying federal authorities when an immigrant is about to be released from their custody.
"Our state agencies are not immigration enforcement agencies," said Gov. Inslee, "We will not be complicit in the Trump administration's depraved efforts to break up hard-working immigrant and refugee families."
Critics say sanctuary laws hamper the ability of police to do their job. Republican state Sen. Phil Fortunato, who voted against the Washington law when it was before the Legislature, said he thought it would hamper the ability of police to take action against subjects they suspect to be illegal.
"This not only puts law enforcement at risk, it puts private citizens at risk," Fortunato said.
Jorge Baron, head of the Seattle-based Northwest Immigrants' Rights Project, said the rules