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Bloomington adopts Welcoming America plan despite calls for stronger aid for undocumented immigrants

BLOOM COUNCIL JAN 11 PIC 2

BLOOMINGTON (HOI) - The Bloomington City Council Monday night agreed to participate in a non-profit group's effort to help immigrants feel more at home in U.S. communities.

The council's vote was unanimous, but two council members who want stronger support for undocumented immigrants did not attend the meeting.

At a recent committee-of-the-whole meeting, Jenn Carrillo and Jeff Crabill voiced opposition to council member Donna Boelen's proposal for the city to participate in the Welcoming America initiative, which helps communities create a more inclusive environment.

"This initiative is council member Boelen's way of saving face while rejected an ordinance to truly protect our immigrant neighbors, and it allows council members who have taken anti-immigrant positions to posture as though they are not anti-immigrant," Carrillo said in a Facebook post Monday night.

Next week, Carrillo and Crabill plan to present a Welcoming City ordinance that would prevent the use of any government resources for any immigration enforcement activity, including the police department working with Federal ICE agents.

Council member Jamie Mathy would like to see the city adopt both resolutions.

"There are a lot of people in the community that think this is an either-or, either this or the Welcoming Cities, and I reject that notion," said Mathy.

"I think they actually have the potential to work really well together, hand-in-hand," Mathy also said.

Howard Packowitz

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