Editor’s note: This is a press release by King County Executive Dow Constantine sent on Jan. 25.
The administration’s action against immigrants and refugees betrays the fundamental principle that has guided our nation since its inception: that we welcome people who come here fleeing tyranny, fleeing oppression, seeking a better life. We do not build walls. We demand that they be torn down. We do not ask people to show their papers when they report a crime or bring their sick child to a clinic. We do not push children and families into the shadows, and sow fear among our neighbors who may look or speak or pray differently than the majority. King County proudly upholds the fundamental, self-evident truth announced at our nation’s founding: that all are created equal. We embrace the basic American value that we are a nation of opportunity for all. Immigrants and refugees are welcome here, and our region has acted decisively to become more inclusive, removing barriers to affordable housing, transit, and support to help children.
Now, in this toxic environment, we must do even more. We will offer even greater assistance to community partners providing legal services and immigration assistance. We will increase support and resources to those who can gain citizenship. We will work with local cities and other counties to establish stronger safeguards to protect undocumented immigrants and refugees.
Martin Luther King Jr. County is a place where everyone – regardless of where they started in life – has the opportunity to flourish. Today’s actions by the administration, and those actions we expect are to come, serve only to strengthen our resolve, and draw our community closer.