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County pushes for legal aid for undocumented immigrants

OW Staff Writer | 12/16/2016, midnight
The Los Angeles County Board of Supervisors voted this week to push for state legal aid for undocumented immigrants facing ...

The Los Angeles County Board of Supervisors voted this week to push for state legal aid for undocumented immigrants facing deportation.

The issue was part of a discussion of the county’s 2017-18 state legislative agenda.

Supervisors Janice Hahn and Hilda Solis recommended county support for services and state funding that would provide immigrants with due process protections, including legal representation, when facing deportation.

“Deportations destroy families, and I am more committed than ever to protecting individuals who are integral to the fabric of our communities and are just trying to achieve the American dream,” Hahn said. “Undocumented immigrants facing deportation proceedings need legal representation to help them navigate complicated immigration laws and (to) fight on their behalf.”

Solis championed a motion last week seeking to protect immigrants from any changes to immigration law made by the incoming federal administration.

“My immigrant protection motion, which the board passed last week, will explore steps the county can take to protect our residents,” Solis said. “In this continued effort, Los Angeles County must leverage all the resources available by supporting similar legislative proposals coming from every level of government.”

Other county legislative priorities include:

— preservation of the Affordable Care Act;

— justice, rehabilitation and diversion programs and infrastructure;

— homeless services;

— affordable housing;

— transportation; and

— environmental health and sustainability.

The last priority was added as an amendment by Supervisor Sheila Kuehl and includes advocating for extension of the state’s cap-and-trade program, set to expire in 2020.

Hahn and Solis also amended that item to include legislation giving local governments the authority to require responsible parties to clean up environmental contamination.