Dear Mayor Sandoval and the Members of the Pomona City Council,
On behalf of the Latino and Latina Roundtable of the San Gabriel and Pomona Valley, I write to strongly support the SB-54 Compliance Ordinance that is currently being proposed by the ICE Out of Pomona Coalition and currently under consideration by the city council.
In previous years, our Latino and Latina Roundtable has collaborated with city council members and officials on issues that directly affect the rights of our Latino/a community and our diverse communities. As a result, as part of coalition efforts, we have been able to find common ground in supporting the rights of our immigrant and refugee families. As part of these efforts, Pomona became a national model for how to work with coalitions in developing a center for day laborers. In recognizing how immigrant families were being affected by checkpoints, the council took the lead in making important changes to the conducting of these checkpoints. In the course of this action, the council openly supported the passage of a bill allowing undocumented immigrants to obtain a driver’s license. In carrying out these actions, the council has ensured the rights, not only of the majority Latino community, but a large sector who are immigrants of all nationalities.
Now, with the introduction of the SB 54 Compliance Ordinance, the council is once again being asked to take the lead in being an example as to how SB 54 can be implemented on a local level. This request comes at a time when our immigrant communities are facing some of the deepest attacks on human rights in history. With the present administration doing away with Temporary Protective Status status for refugees from Nicaragua, Haiti, Guinea, Liberia, and Sierra Leone, there is the reality that this status may not be renewed for 265,00 immigrants from Honduras and El Salvador who have been here for decades. We personally know families who live in Pomona who are being affected by these policies. We also know many DACA recipients from Pomona who are facing the reality that DACA may be terminated on March 5.
Under these conditions, the Pomona City Council can take the lead in supporting the intent of the California Values Act and ensure support for our vulnerable communities. This issue is very important to our membership that includes immigrants and the families of immigrants. We are fully in support of this ordinance and urge your unanimous approval.
Jose Calderon, President of the Latino and Latina Roundtable of the San Gabriel and Pomona Valley