LANSING — Two bills to usurp local control and invite racial and ethnic profiling passed the House Military, Veterans Affairs and Homeland Security Committee today along party lines, with all Democrats voting no. House Bills 4083 and 4090 would prohibit local municipalities from passing and enforcing “welcoming cities” policies, weakening trust between communities and local law enforcement, ultimately making communities less safe. In response, the Latino Caucus issued the following statement:

“We all want to keep our families safe, and in times of uncertainty it can be easy to default to this kind of fear-mongering. But Michigan, as the home to a number of thriving immigrant communities, is better than that, and it’s better than this legislation. Instead of debating bills based on false and discriminatory beliefs about immigrants, we should be allowing local municipalities to decide for themselves what works for them — especially when the overwhelming evidence shows that welcoming policies ultimately make families safer and strengthen local economies.

“We were sent to the Legislature to tackle the serious issues facing Michigan families — to make our roads safer, our paychecks stronger, our schools better equipped to prepare our students for the jobs of the future, and attracting and retaining talent in Michigan that is diverse and inclusive. That’s what we should be focusing on.”