(TargetLiberty.org) – Boston, a self-proclaimed sanctuary city, is considering pushing forward a resolution that would give immigrants with “legal status” the right to vote in local elections. This proposal was debated on Tuesday during a council meeting, however so far the measure has the support of the majority of Boston city councilors.
Councilor Kendra Lara was the one to bring forward the home rule petition which was examined during the hearing and included many city election officials, immigration advocates, and councilors. The Boston Herald reported that Lara had stated that there were people who had not been given the right to express their voice in their local government despite having been working and investing in their local communities. She added that everyone should have the right to speak on the decisions that could have an impact on their everyday lives.
City Clerk Jessie Carpenter from Takoma Park, Maryland, had previously presented a similar policy to the councilors in office. The policy had already gone into effect in her jurisdiction.
An October press release noted that Takoma Park had originally introduced the measure that allowed non-U.S. residents to vote three decades ago, however, a 1992 initiative in Maryland City provided migrants the right to vote in municipal elections regardless of what their legal status was. The press release noted that around one-third of the residents in Tacoma Park were foreign-born.
On Tuesday, Carpenter told the Boston City Council that the immigrants in Takoma Park did not need to disclose their legal status when voting, instead they just needed to provide proof of city residency and their identity.
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