Dallas County government sent a signal to state and federal authorities Tuesday that the second most populous county in Texas is welcoming to immigrants, regardless of legal status.
Commissioners voted 4-1 to approve a non-binding resolution designating Dallas County as a "welcoming community".
The non-binding resolution calls on the county to support immigrant and refugees, regardless of documentation - and for local law enforcement to “end non-essential collaborations with Immigration and Customs Enforcement.”
The non-binding resolution to support immigrant and refugees, regardless of documentation - and for police to “end non-essential collaborations with immigration and customs enforcement.”
Dallas City Councilman Lee Kleinman says the city and council agrees with the spirit of the resolution but the clause dealing with ICE was enough for to him to urge commissioners to remove that portion.
“Please don’t put us in that position where we get named a sanctuary city,” Kleinman said. “We are asking to have our hand slapped.”
Whether sanctuary cities actual exist is up for debate but urban municipalities are worried Texas lawmakers, backed by Governor Greg Abbott, will withhold funding if the perception exists that local governments are not supporting immigration enforcement.
The Texas Senate passed a bill Tuesday reflecting those intentions.
Commissioner Elba Garcia authored the resolution and says it simply reflects the values of Dallas County citizens.
“The purpose of this resolution is the dream, the American dream,” Garcia said.