On Tuesday, the Alabama chapter of the Council on American-Islamic Relations (CAIR-Alabama), the state’s largest Muslim civil liberties and advocacy organization, and Adelante Alabama Workers Center, which unites day laborers, domestic workers, and other low-wage and immigrant workers and their families in the Birmingham area, along with other coalition partners, faith and civic leaders, met outside of the Birmingham City Hall where they called on Birmingham Mayor Randall Woodfin to honor his commitment to be on the front lines of resistance to President Donald Trump‘s polices.
There they endeavored to hold the Mayor to the progressive mandate he was elected on by calling him to take action on the proposed “Trust and Public Safety” order.
The order would prevent Birmingham from expending its own local resources on enforcing federal immigration policies. In addition to saving the city money, this policy would also promote trust in local law enforcement and protect public safety for all residents, regardless of immigration status. It does not interfere with any state or federal laws.
CAIR-Alabama and Adelante met with Mayor Woodfin back in April to discuss this proposal, but after months of delays from the city, they two came together with their coalition partner organizations to ask Woodfin to take action.
“We have been working with the Mayor on this proposal for months, but with the federal administration’s harsh enforcement of a ‘zero-tolerance’ immigration policy we’ve begun to see fear and anxiety reflected in our communities,” said Ali Massoud, CAIR-Alabama Government Affairs Coordinator. “The Mayor has expressed ample support for marginalized black and brown populations, and now we are asking him to keep his promises and pass this executive order.”
He added, “Birmingham has a robust immigrant population, but this executive order isn’t just for them, it’s for everyone. Passing the ‘Trust and Public Safety’ order promotes trust between communities of color and local law enforcement, making the city safer for all of us.”
Addressing the Mayor directly, Cesar Mata, Adelante Alabama Worker Center Volunteer said, “My community does not want to live in fear. We do not want to continue to suffer family separation. Our community wants to feel safe when we talk to the police. We need an official policy from the City of Birmingham that will protect all families. The “Fostering Trust and Promoting Public Safety and Civli Rights for All City Residents” executive order can help you keep the promise you made to keep us safe. We know Birmingham can do what is right. Mr. Mayor, you can decide what side of history you are on. All of Birmingham’s citizens still believe in you.”
The following groups and organizations spoke at the event:
- Adelante Alabama Worker Center
- Alabama Coalition for Immigrant Justice
- Black Lives Matter Birmingham
- Faith in Action Alabama
- La Casita
- Greater Birmingham Ministries
- National Lawyers Guild
- Southern Poverty Law Center
- NAACP of Alabama
- Southerners On New Ground
Watch the event be live-streamed (previously recorded) below: