The discussion continues in Bloomington to make the city a welcoming place for immigrants.
Local groups for immigrant protections and rights are coming forward to pressure city officials to continue the conversation about a potential ordinance.
The groups say city council members aren’t listening.
Bloomington PD say it’s their job to serve and protect all under the law, but local activists involved with “Not in Our Town” say they want their city to be safe for everyone, including so-called Dreamers.
“The main motivation is to build a positive relationship between city services and the immigrant community,” says Mike Matejka, Not in Our Town.
Bloomington is home to colleges, busy streets, local shops and Dreamers.
“Not it Our Town” has always stood for an inclusive community,” says Matejka. “Everybody is a part of the community. Everybody should be respected. Everybody should be welcome.”
The group believes city leaders are not having the conversation of protecting immigrants after dropping the topic from their agenda.
“Too often our immigrant community lives in the shadows and even though they are very much a part of daily life,” says Matejka. “They need the full protections and the full involvement that’s available to them.”
The Illinois Trust Act is a state effort to make Illinois a welcoming place for immigrants, but there are citizens who do oppose the idea saying the ordinance would go against federal law.
“If you pass this, you will handcuff the police even further.”
There will be demonstrating outside city hall in Bloomington this Sunday at 6 pm and again on Monday.
Activists also plan to fast as part of their demonstration.
Bloomington Police Chief Brendan Heffner says no one has been deported by his department since before he became chief.