Our community will recognize undocumented residents as valuable contributors. We lift up the dignity of our undocumented brothers and sisters and expose the links between mass deportation and mass incarceration and the common struggle of the Brown and Black communities. We work in partnership with the Diocesan Immigrant Support Network (DISN) on many issues.
The Current Reality
While health care was restored for 3,000 undocumented immigrants last year, there are many more in need of health care access. In particular, undocumented elders over 64 are not currently eligible for County coverage, leaving them without access to health care as they age.
We have conducted research on undocumented detainees in the County jail. This has revealed that they can be detained for low-level offenses for long periods until Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) decides to deport them. Documented immigrants or citizens would have far shorter sentences for the same offense. In addition, there is currently a financial incentive to incarcerate undocumented residents due to the contract between the County Sheriff’s department and ICE which pays per detainee: the more people arrested, the more money the County makes.
Undocumented detainees, as well as other inmates, are subject to poor conditions at the Rio Cosumnes Correctional Center (RCCC). There is inadequate access to legal counsel. Visitation by family is hampered by the lack of public transportation to the RCCC.
Creating Change in 2016
In 2016 we are looking at the impact of creating revenue based on the incarceration of undocumented residents. We will work to get physical conditions and access to legal counsel improved for those incarcerated at Rio Cosumnes Correctional Center, as well improved access for family visitors. We will research the unique needs of incarcerated undocumented women and the impact of family separation.
We are working with ACT’s Health Campaign to extend county healthcare coverage for undocumented residents beyond the initial 3,000 who were covered in 2015, as well as to expand eligibility to our elders by eliminating the age cap which excludes people over age 64 from coverage.
We facilitate the dissemination of information about access to drivers’ licenses (AB60), DACA and DAPA when it is implemented. We engage in the work of the Campaign for Citizenship which calls for a roadmap to citizenship