The federal crackdown on immigrants without sufficient regard to the impact on local communities and groups calls for a response. We’re pleased to see South Berkshire towns and agencies become the latest Berkshire communities to do so.
The Berkshire Hills Regional School District School Committee has adopted a resolution restricting federal Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) activities in schools within the three-town (Great Barrington, Stockbridge, West Stockbridge) district (Eagle, April 17). The resolution specifies that the agents won’t be allowed in schools without identification and a judicial warrant, and doesn’t guarantee they will be allowed with that documentation.
“We feel this statement needs to be made,” said Berkshire Hills Superintendent Peter Dillon, and with ICE expanding its reach and its activity it is a statement that must be made through the Berkshires. Immigration agents have no business within a school, and for the peace of mind and security of students, parents and faculty, districts should make it clear that access to schools will not be guaranteed or automatically provided.
A month ago, Pittsfield Mayor Linda Tyer and Pittsfield Public Schools Superintendent Jason McCandless made similar statements in support of an immigrant community that understandably feels threatened regardless of its members’ status.
In Stockbridge, Police Chief Darrell Fennelly has proposed a set of guidelines declaring that it does not investigate “potential violations of civil immigration laws as that duty belongs to the federal government” (Eagle, April 20). This, too, is a statement that needs…
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