One immigration activist is calling for California's passage of what is called the Undocumented Caravan for Trust Act. He and many other immigrants are so convinced of the necessity of passing such an act that they even staged a sit-in at the Governor of California's office in hopes that the bill would be signed.
These individuals claim that this act is necessary to protect undocumented immigrants in California and immigrants facing deportation. They also believe that protections granted under the Trust Act would protect immigrants from facing deportation proceedings simply because this immigrant has for some reason been arrested.
There is already concern among the immigrant community that their concerns are being ignored. For example, some point to Los Angeles County Sheriff Baca's reported claim that he would defy the provisions of the Trust Act if it was passed into law. There is also concern that the Governor's office may be unduly influenced by Immigration Customs Enforcement officials rather than those that speak for the immigrants.
We will need to wait and see what eventually does become of this particular bill. As attorneys engaged in deportation defense, we understand that we cannot always rely upon legislators to pass the type of legislation that will necessarily provide more protection for documented and undocumented immigrants.
What's currently important is for immigrants that have been arrested to get in immediate contact with an attorney to discuss their individual situation. Though the laws protecting immigrants may always be less than ideal, there are still possible options for preventing an arrest from leading to deportation.
Source: Huffington Post, "Why Undocumented Californians Sat-in Governor Brown's Office," by Jonathan Perez, July 9, 2013