By Associated Press - Wednesday, February 22, 2017

AUSTIN, Texas (AP) - A collection of Democratic state senators has proposed legislation prohibiting police from enforcing federal immigration laws in hospitals, schools, churches, courthouses and colleges and universities across Texas.

Houston Sen. Sylvia Garcia announced her “safe zones” bill Wednesday flanked by co-sponsors. She said such places “are supposed to be safe for everyone.”

The proposal follows authorities recently detaining on immigration charges a woman who was at an El Paso courthouse seeking a protective order against her allegedly abusive boyfriend.

The Texas Senate already has approved a bill banning “sanctuary cities” which calls for criminal charges against law enforcement officials who refuse to help federal authorities deport immigrants in the country illegally.

The measure must still clear the Texas House, where the provision seeking criminal charges for non-compliant officials may not survive.

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