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Will Illinois become a sanctuary state?

Governor Bruce Rauner is considering signing the Illinois Trust Act. This legislation is aimed at protecting undocumented immigrants in Illinois.

The Trust Act was passed by both chambers of the Illinois legislature last May. If enacted, Illinois would become what is commonly referred to as a “sanctuary state.” This means that federal agents will generally need a warrant before detaining any undocumented immigrants.

If signed into law, the bill would provide a number of protections for immigrant families. Some key components of the legislation include:

  • Requiring federal agents to have a warrant before arresting undocumented immigrants
  • Barring federal agents from “safe zones,” including schools and health care facilities
  • Preventing law enforcement from questioning immigrants unless they have a warrant

It’s estimated that there are upwards of 500,000 undocumented immigrants living in Illinois. It’s important that there is a sense of trust between immigrants and law enforcement officials. Legislation like the Trust Act can help bridge that gap and foster more cooperation between the two communities while enhancing the rights immigrants have in Illinois.

The Trust Act has the support of over 60 organizations. These organizations in support of the legislation include law enforcement groups, immigrant advocacy groups and community organizations.

The legislation also has broad support in the business community. Over 170 CEOs, business owners and the Illinois Business Immigration Coalition have all expressed their support for the bill.

Governor Rauner has until August 28 to decide what he’ll do with the bill. He could sign it or veto it. If he doesn’t act, the bill will automatically become law after the 28th. We will continue to monitor whether the Trust Act is enacted or if Governor Rauner vetoes the bill.

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