Written by Amanda Angulo
Democratic San Diego County Supervisor, Terra Lawson-Remer introduced a plan on Tuesday to make San Diego the first southern border county in the United States that includes a program to provide legal aid and representation for immigrants that are facing removal proceedings.
The Immigrant Rights Legal Defense Program claims to try to solve the issue of the current backlog in immigration courts. In addition, this will fund attorneys to represent San Diego’s currently detained illegal immigrants. According to the National Immigration Law Center, there are over one million cases pending throughout the nation.
“Making quality legal representation available to immigrants facing removal proceedings is essential to living up to the fundamental principles of the U.S. Constitution, which establishes due process and the right to a fair trial,” said executive director of the ACLU of San Diego and Imperial Counties, Norma Chavez-Peterson.
This is another example of elected officials and large groups shifting their focus on people who do not have citizenship, when they should, in fact, be focusing on the American people. Supervisors of San Diego County have a responsibility to their constituents and need to aim to protect them and find a way to make their lives better.
However, we are witnessing the contrary; by deciding to put illegal immigrants above American citizens Lawson-Remer is putting her constituents at risk. How many times do we have to see the people in power put those that are most vulnerable in the backburner? It was seen with our students who were ignored, while the unaccompanied minors were being housed at the convention center and given teachers. The illegal immigrants were given the opportunity to attend school in person before any of our public students. Now, we are starting to see it by yet another Democratic leader, that is prioritizing the livelihoods of the detained immigrants over Americans.
A vote is scheduled for May 4th and if the pilot program is approved, the staff working on the plan will have 90 days in order to set a permanent budget to operate the program.