Immigration info fair a resounding success Community organizations collaborate in Orland event

photo by Leslie LaytonLegal Services of Northern California assisted with citizenship applications.

photo by Leslie Layton

Legal Services of Northern California assisted with citizenship applications.

by Leslie Layton

An immigration fair held Saturday in Orland, sponsored by nonprofit organizations including ChicoSol, served about 100 area residents by providing attorneys for consultations, seminars on Constitutional protections and access to community groups.

The Immigration Information Fair was held at Orland High School in order to provide information and resources to community members who may have become concerned about how the Trump administration’s policies will affect them. About 50 people who had made appointments in advance were able to consult with attorneys or law students at no cost. In meeting rooms, they filled out citizenship applications, discussed citizenship eligibility and learned from immigration attorneys about possible eligibility for residency and work programs. read more

Non-sanctuary resolution dies at county meeting Supervisors vote only to oppose state legislation

photo by Karen LasloDistrict 2 Supervisor Larry Wahl

photo by Karen Laslo

District 2 Supervisor Larry Wahl

by Leslie Layton

Supervisor Larry Wahl retreated Tuesday from an effort to officially declare that Butte County is not a so-called “sanctuary jurisdiction” – a designation adopted by some counties in response to federal immigration policies.

Wahl declined to move for passage of a draft resolution that he had requested, after the board heard a detailed 60-minute presentation by Sheriff Kory Honea and testimony from a dozen members of the public. Most speakers viewed the resolution as unnecessary and warned that it would be perceived as a hostile gesture. read more

Know Your (Seven) Facts Undocumented immigrant population stable

photo by Leslie Layton

Participant in Jan. 21 Chico Women’s March

Regardless of how you feel about illegal immigration, facts will be useful when you discuss this polarizing national issue. Here is ChicoSol’s March 2017 facts roundup, focusing in particular on the Latino demographic. The most interesting fact may be the last on our list:

1. Latinos comprise 15 percent of Butte County’s total population, according to the U.S. Census 2011-2015;
2. Latinos comprise about 39 percent of California’s population;
3. Nationwide, Latinos make up more than half of the K-12 total student population;
4. Nationwide, 64 percent of all Latinos are U.S. born;
5. The number of undocumented immigrants in this country has been estimated at about 11 million, a figure that has remained stable since 2009. About 66 percent of the undocumented population had been here for at least a decade in a 2014 study.
6. In 2014, Mexicans made up about 52 percent of the undocumented population, but that figure has been declining.“The origin countries of unauthorized immigrants have shifted, with the number from Mexico declining since 2009 and the number from elsewhere rising,” says Pew Research.
7. Forbes magazine has just reported that an astonishing 83 percent of the finalists of the 2016 Intel Science Talent Search were the children of immigrants. –– Kate Sheehy and Leslie Layton read more

Rally speakers promote sanctuary city concept

KL photo2

Ali Knight, a member of the Mechoopda tribe indigenous to the Chico area, spoke in favor of sanctuary status at a Saturday rally at Downtown Plaza in Chico. “This is Mechoopda land,” Knight reminded about 100 people who gathered to support a sanctuary designation for Chico. “Most of the native population here was decimated. The idea that people don’t belong to a place started a long time ago.

“We are still here and want to promote this as a sanctuary city,” Knight said.

The rally and march Saturday were organized by Shelby Chase, a member of the board of the local chapter of the American Civil Liberties Union, in response to the Feb. 21 City Council vote against considering sanctuary status for Chico. A sanctuary designation could be either symbolic or viewed as a policy statement related to local police cooperation with federal immigration authorities. read more

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Sanctuary proponents regroup after failed effort at City Council Community members regret lack of discussion

by Leslie Layton

In part, it was the 4-3 vote against merely considering their request that surprised and frustrated college students, and that moved some of them to booing before they left the Council Chamber.

In part, it was the way the vote was taken – swiftly and without explanation – that stunned or offended some community members. On Tuesday, an audience that filled the chamber asked the Chico City Council to consider at an upcoming meeting a sanctuary policy that would help protect the local immigrant community and its relationship with police. read more

Not on our agenda! Chico City Council won't agendize a discussion on sanctuary status

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by Leslie Layton

The Chico City Council’s conservative majority blocked a community-wide effort, led by a group of college students who made brave and articulate presentations Tuesday night, to agendize a discussion on sanctuary status.

Sanctuary is a designation that could be as simple as an official statement welcoming diversity, or as meaty as a statement that guides law-enforcement policy toward the local immigrant community.

The panel quickly voted 4-3 against a motion by Councilwoman Ann Schwab to discuss sanctuary status for Chico at an upcoming meeting, after 37 people – including college students, attorneys, teachers, activists and other community members – asked for a hearing on the matter. read more