Political Arena

Espaillat: Protect ‘sensitive’ spaces


Rep. Adriano Espaillat, D-Manhattan, along with three other congressional members, have introduced legislation they say protect immigrants from being targeted by authorities in various spaces. 

The Protecting Sensitive Locations Act would keep Immigration and Customs Enforcement from raiding and arresting immigrants in certain areas like houses of worship, courthouses and even the motor vehicles department.

The bill is designed to keep law enforcement officials from arresting people in highly public areas, Espaillat said in a statement. It also is designed to protect people in areas that are meant to provide important services, like at hospitals. 

“Individuals should not be subject to arrest while mourning loved ones at funerals or while dropping off their child for school,” he said. 

“The Protecting Sensitive Locations Act holds law enforcement accountable, and ensures that they adhere to the letter of the law.”


Health bill has IDC support, but waits

State Sen. Jeffrey Klein announced his support for the New York Health Bill during the recent legislative session, adding with him the support of all eight members of the Independent Democratic Conference. 

The bill, which passed the assembly several times, would provide a single-payer health care system for New Yorkers.

 However, it has never made it past the Republican-controlled senate.

Though now that the state budget has passed, it is unlikely New Yorkers can expect to see any movement on the bill until next session. 

The bill has the support of 30 senators, and needs just two more to pass there. 

In light of the failure by congressional Republicans in Washington to repeal and replace the Affordable Care Act — more commonly known as Obamacare — a Klein staffer said the IDC leader planned to help the New York Health Bill pass in Albany by signing as a co-sponsor.