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Wednesday, March 9, 2011

Save the Date: April 12th Immigration Debate and Panel Discussion

On April 12th, the eve of the Philadelphia City Council primaries, “Voices for Safe and Diverse Neighborhoods”, a coalition composed of the New Sanctuary Movement, JUNTOS, Nationalities Services Center, Friends of Farmworkers and others immigrant rights advocacy groups, will hold a public debate on community safety in diverse communities.

The public debate will be held within the 1st City Council District, one of the most immigrant-rich districts in the City. Two well known public figures with differing view points will participate: Stu Bykofsky, a columnist with the Daily News, and Sarah Paoletti, a professor of law at University of Pennsylvania. Debaters will discuss the impact of local policies on the relationships between immigrant communities, citizen communities and the city government. Topics will include (but will not be limited to): city security policies that encourage or prevent racial profiling; police response to domestic violence situations; language access in linguistically diverse neighborhoods; and, especially, the pros and cons of the current information-sharing agreement between the Philadelphia Police Department and the Department of Homeland Security's office of Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE).

We will also invite at-large and 1st District candidates in the City Council elections to participate as panelists who will respond to the debate once it has concluded. Each panelist will be given a set amount of time to share her reflections and positions regarding the debated issues. We expect a large voter/resident turn-out from the 1st District and beyond as well as noted City leaders from government and the private sector with an interest in the topic and policies at stake.

For more information about how to become a Co-Sponsor or get more involved, email Jen Rock at

The event will take place at Broad St Ministries, at 315 S. Broad St, from 7 pm to 9 pm.

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Philadelphia NSM and related immigration events