We, the undersigned business leaders of our state, stand firm in our opposition to proposed House Bill 370, also referred to as “Require Sheriff Cooperation with ICE.
The bill would require local law enforcement to participate in federal law enforcement through forced compliance with ICE detainer requests.
We urge you to oppose HB 370.
This bill will harm North Carolina’s immigrant communities, create a financial burden for local governments, subvert the will of voters, take away power from democratically elected sheriffs, and cost North Carolina important investment opportunities.
Last year, voters in North Carolina’s largest counties—Mecklenburg, Wake, and others—elected sheriffs who campaigned on promises to end their county’s cooperation with ICE in order to protect the rights and safety of all residents. We now stand with these sheriffs of our state’s largest counties who oppose this bill because they know cooperating with federal immigration officers will harm, not help, public safety. This bill would spread fear, erode the trust between local police and immigrant communities, and trigger an increase in unreported crimes.
According to the New American Economy Report on North Carolina, there are more than 800,000 immigrants living in North Carolina, who contribute $6.4 billion annually in local, state, and federal taxes. Immigrant workers compose 53.1% of painters, construction workers, and maintenance workers and 49.7% of agricultural workers in the state of North Carolina. Immigrant business owners provide 151,117 jobs to the people of North Carolina and their firms contribute $24.7 billion in sales to the North Carolina economy.
The state of North Carolina should be celebrating the contributions of the immigrant business community, not endorsing legislation to make them feel unwelcome.
This bill was introduced in the name of increasing safety, but there is no evidence to suggest this will make North Carolinians any safer. According to a Center for American Progress report, there are 35.5 fewer crimes committed per every 10,000 people in welcoming/sanctuary cities as opposed to non-welcoming cities. Aside from safety, the poverty rate is on average 2.3% lower and the unemployment rate is 1.1% lower in welcoming cities compared to non welcoming cities. In addition, this bill would erode the trust between local police and immigrant communities and trigger an increase in unreported crimes.
Taking a harsh anti-immigrant stance North Carolina is callous, and it would dissuade future industry from investing in our state.
North Carolina’s economy relies heavily on the work provided by immigrant communities. This bill sends a message to those communities as well as the rest of the United States, that immigrants are unwelcome in the Tarheel State. This bill sends the wrong message, puts financial strain on local municipalities, and does nothing to increase the safety of North Carolinians.
We urge you to oppose HB 370.
- Eric Henry, President, TS Designs
- Stella J Adams, SJ Adams Consulting
- Bryant Smith, Citrusolution Asheville
- Wendy A Pascual, CrossWays Consulting
- Greg Walker Wilson, Walker Wilson Consulting
- Lori Garcia-McCammon, True Ridge
- Fabian Palomo, Palomo Insulation Inc.
- Alan Campos, MC Construction
- Pahola Burgos-Chala, Burgos Chala Law
- Jessica Ayala, La Abejita Snack Land
- Manuel Bentacur, CEO and Owner, Manolo’s Latin Bakery
- Gerardo Roman, Vapiano
- Bill Devlin, Olive or Twist
- Marthe Worley, Canine Shear Heaven
- Kristin Bradley-Bull, Roots to Canopy Consulting, LLC
- Alex Villanueva, Green Muse Home Cleaning
- Alberto Loyola, Calzada Drywall
- Patrick and Meg McElwee, Sew Liberated
- Erika López, Nsk Cleaning
- Bob Page, Chairman & CEO, Replacements, Ltd.
- Pegi Pike, Pegi Pike Jewelry
- Kim Hartley, Anam Cara Theatre Company
- Antolin, BA Painting and Services
- Norberto Pizarro, NP High Quality Building Maintenance
- Cesar Lara, Carnicería el Caporal
- Mario Castaneda, Casta Construction
- Mirian Porras, Nuestro Centro
- Rose Mary Barrantes-Cohen, Fan de La Cima
- Jay Weatherly and Kim Hunty, High Five Coffee
- Angelita Morrisroe, La Palmita of Leland
- Elisa Ruuz, La Palmita Mexican Store
- Leticia Zavala, Farm Labor Organizing Committee
- Cruz Vera, La Cuata Mexican Restaurant
- Brooke Losey, Asheville Business Arts
- Melissa Berenthal, EVERYBODY Yoga
- Johnny Rice, Kuiper Property Services
- Lidia Martinez, Nuestro Porvenir LLC
- Ismael, Superior Floor
- Martin Eakes, CEO, Center for Community Self-Help
- Julio Vega, Notorious Flooring
- Leobardo Ballinas, LB Mechanical Labors Contractor
- Connie Matisse, East Fork
- Kelly Prime, Relax and Rejuvinate of Asheville
- Tyler J. McCall, TJMHQ LLC
- Greg and Mary Thompson, TLM Cleaners
- Molly M Poore, Molly M Ceramics LLC
- Djuna Roberst, Symbiosis
- Andrew Hill, Quest Diagnostics
- Christina Carter, Ten Mile NC, Inc.
- Laura Evans, OUTRA
- Tiffany Santiago, Wortham Center for the Performing Arts
- Taylor Wilson, TWStyle
- Patricia Iniguez, Cenzontle LLC
- Tarleton Walmsley, Garden Party
- Barbara Zaretsky, ZDesign
- Seana Monley, Tierra Sol Studio
- Emilie Knap & Arturo Leal, Chestnut Street Inn
- Gillian Roberts, Ware, LLC
- Spring McKenzie, Maple Tree Dog Camp, Rebekah Owings, HQO Advertising LLC
- Madison Shields, Madison Shields Photography
- Katie Berman, Katie Berman Textiles
- Sheena Heaslip, Anchor Heart Films
- Melissa Myers, Red Rover Booking
- Molly Caldwell, Poiesis Counseling
- Routh A. Cooper, LightPress, LLC
- Whitney Stahl, Sage Face Paper
- Sara Mulvey, Revelry Tintype
- Laurie Harris, Laurie Caffrey Clay
- Nefertete King, The Green Lab
- Adrea Reusing, Lantern
- Pat Johnson, Studio Three
- Leslie O’Hara, Time Liberation Services
- Dr. David Hayes, Harvest Moon Women’s Health
- Jamie Howton, Local 604, LLC
- Casey Campfield, The Crow & Quill
- Becky Lloyd, Lloyd Pottery
- Rafael Bookstaber, Wildflowers Vintage
- Cynthia Pierce, Cafe Yuzu
- Craig Childs, Alkemi
- Tinka Jordy, Eno Gallery
- Connie Regan-Blake, StoryWindow
- Rosetta Buan, Rosetta’s Kitchen
- Timothy Gormley, Burial Beer Co.