BART directors call for ‘Sanctuary in Transit’ policy

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SAN FRANCISCO (KRON) — In a BART Board Meeting Thursday, two directors called for the public transportation system to investigate and prepare a ‘Sanctuary in Transit’ policy for possible adoption by the Board of Directors.

Per the policy, BART would join other cities and counties in BART’s service area in limiting collaboration with Immigration and Customs Enforcement and other federal agencies.

Directors Lateefah Simon and Nick Josefowitz are pushing for the policy because of concerns that BART collaboration with Federal enforcement would undermine trust between BART Police and the communities they serve.

“Over 500,000 undocumented immigrants have made Bay Area their home. Many of these community members use BART to get to their jobs, school, and places of worship in their communities. Local enforcement needs to focus on keeping our communities safe, rather than becoming entangled in federal immigration efforts,” Simon said.

“This would be an important step for the BART Police Department, as well as the District. It will ensure that riders and local citizens feel comfortable and safe when they are reporting a crime to BART Police, or are otherwise contacted by officers,” said David Rizk, Vice Chair of the BART Police Citizen Review Board.

More than 10 individuals at Thursday’s BART Board Meeting spoke in support of the policy.

Thursday’s motion at the BART Board meeting requested that BART’s Operations & Safety Committee take up a ‘Sanctuary in Transit’ policy at its next meeting.

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