August 8, 2019

Statement by Multnomah County Chair Deborah Kafoury and Commissioners Sharon Meieran, Susheela Jayapal, Jessica Vega Pederson and Lori Stegmann: 

Like many of you, we woke this morning to reports of Immigration and Customs Enforcement officers arresting working parents in Mississippi on their childrens’ first day of school. 

These raids are a continuation of the Trump Administration’s efforts to criminalize and dehumanize immigrants and refugees, to tear apart families, and to deteriorate trust in our communities. 

Ripples of fear are spreading through communities across this country, including ours. This fear affects our co-workers, our families, and the community members we all serve. As this administration no doubt intended, this chilling effect will potentially frighten anyone in Multnomah County who, on any other day, would access our services, including our health clinics and court system.

We can't have people afraid to access justice in Multnomah County. We can’t have parents afraid to seek prenatal care, immunizations or the nutritional support their children need to thrive. We can’t have parents afraid to leave for work or take their children to school.

Despite this administration's politically motivated efforts to scapegoat any immigrant, Multnomah County remains steadfast in its commitment to provide services without regard to immigration status. It’s written on the doors of our headquarters and in our core values:  All are welcome here.