[JURIST] San Francisco Mayor Gavin Newsom [official website] pledged Sunday to keep the city a haven for immigrants, saying that while he cannot stop US Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) [official website] agents from making arrests, he will try to keep them from conducting immigrations raids. In a statement at a local church, Newsom said "I will not allow…anyone associated with this city to cooperate" with the raids. Reconfirming the San Francisco Board of Supervisors 1989 declaration that San Francisco as a "sanctuary city," Newsom said no city employee will be permitted to aid the federal agents on immigration enforcement issues.
Since last year, ICE officials have conducted raids throughout California and the rest of the country. Earlier this month, thousands of protesters marched in Los Angeles [JURIST report] against President Bush's latest proposal to grant citizenship to the more than 12 million illegal immigrants in the US. The proposal [PDF text] floated last month would allow illegal immigrants [JURIST news archive] to apply for work visas, but at the expiration of the visa, immigrants would be required to return to their home countries to actually apply for citizenship. The San Francisco Chronicle has more.