- - Thursday, June 28, 2018

As the Trump administration continues to make immigrants feel less and less secure in this country, they are wondering who they can trust. What can mayors in the Washington area do to show support for immigrants in their communities? And why should they? Look no further than the loud and proud champion of immigrants, D.C. Mayor Muriel Bowser.

D.C. residents who are immigrants should know the extent to which Miss Bowser supports them and mayors of other cities would do well to follow in her footsteps to create communities with safe networks of residents and law enforcement working together. For starters, Miss Bowser understands how being a sanctuary city helps protect all residents. A week after election day in 2016, she issued the following statement: “We are a sanctuary city because we know that our neighborhoods are safer and stronger when no one is afraid to call on our government for help, and when our police can focus on protecting and serving.” When neighbors can trust one another and police can focus their efforts on the well-being of their communities, everyone wins.

Last summer, Miss Bowser redoubled her support of immigrants, this time with the Dreamers. While the world was waiting to hear how the Trump administration would handle Dreamers’ futures, Miss Bowser said, “Ending DACA is not going to fix the immigration system in the United States, nor is it how we will build safer cities or a stronger economy.”

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On June 7, Miss Bowser took the next step of advocacy for immigrants by offering them financial support. She allocated $900,000 of her budget for an Immigrant Legal Services Grant program that links community-based organizations to the immigrant community.

Miss Bowser is a model for mayors all around the country, and with her office a quarter mile from the White House she is on the front lines of the fight. With her statements and actions, she is a huge asset in the fight for immigrant rights. I hope that other local mayors follow suit.


ESL and literacy teacher, Carlos Rosario International Public Charter School


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