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March 16, 2017

Pennsylvania lawmaker to introduce statewide sanctuary protections bill

Philadelphia continues to hold firm on its sanctuary city status

Politics Sanctuary Cities
0711_Kenney_ICE_Immigration Thom Carroll/PhillyVoice

Jim Kenney advocates for "sanctuary city" policies during a rally at LOVE Park in July 2015.

A Pennsylvania state lawmaker plans to introduce a "sanctuary commonwealth” bill that would prohibit law enforcement agencies across the state from participating in federal immigration enforcement-related policing.

The bill, being introduced by state Rep. Chris Rabb, D-Phila., would block the use of “agency or local department funds, facilities, property, equipment or personnel to investigate, interrogate, detain, detect or arrest people for immigration enforcement purposes,” Rabb said in a statement. 

Philadelphia already has such protections in place as a sanctuary city, which city officials have repeatedly vowed to fight to uphold.

The aim of the statewide sanctuary status is to blanket the entire state with such protections and, in doing so, "keep families together and maintain trust between Pennsylvania police and the communities they serve,” while lifting the financial burdens of such policing off local and state law enforcement.