Pennsylvania has become the latest state in the U.S. looking to ban so-called sanctuary cities, where local police officials refuse to comply with federal immigration requests to detain and turn over undocumented immigrants or individuals who are suspected of being undocumented immigrants, according to Lancaster Online. The Pennsylvania Legislature took up the legislation this week, over a month after it was introduced by state Sen. Richard Alloway, a Republican.
The U.S. Department of Homeland Security regularly issues detainers to let law enforcement agencies know that they would like to take custody of undocumented immigrants, and local law enforcement agencies are asked to comply with those measures. There has been intense political debate surrounding sanctuary cities since the shooting of Kathryn Steinle in San Francisco. Steinle was shot by undocumented immigrant Juan Francisco, who had been detained by police previously, as she walked with her father following a dinner in September.
The Pennsylvania bill would not allow municipalities that don’t comply with federal immigration laws to participate in the sale of state surplus property and would block state grants from being awarded.