Sudbury residents call for town to become sanctuary community

A group of Sudbury residents has submitted an article for the annual Town Meeting warrant to make Sudbury a “welcoming or sanctuary community.”

The group also worked with the Sudbury Police Department on formal policies on the treatment of undocumented immigrants, the group said in a press release.

The Sudbury Welcoming Town Committee’s resolution is to “ensure that Sudbury is a safe and welcoming community for all individuals’’ who visit, work, or live there.


Included in the article is the Sudbury Police Department Policy on the Treatment of Undocumented Immigrants.

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According to the release, the committee worked with Sudbury police Chief Scott Nix to develop the written policies, and the article asks Town Meeting to support the policies and to encourage other town departments to adopt similar policies.

The policies state that the enforcement of federal civil immigration laws is “the sole responsibility of the federal government, not the Sudbury Police Department.”

The policies also state that Sudbury Police officers will not detain people solely on the basis of their immigration status without a court order, and will not inquire about immigration status unless necessary in a criminal investigation, to protect an individual’s safety, or to keep the peace.

“Nothing in our warrant article hampers the police in investigating crime, violates any federal or state law, or prevents federal immigration agents from conducting immigration enforcement,” Fred Taylor, chairman of the Sudbury Welcoming Town Committee, said in the release.


Nix said the town’s legal team is still reviewing the language of the article.

“Further review is still pending as to any ramifications of our ability to receive federal funds and I hope to be able to report on that issue at Town Meeting,’’ Nix said.

The warrant article will be voted on at Sudbury’s annual Town Meeting, which begins Monday, May 7, at 7:30 p.m. at Lincoln-Sudbury Regional High School.

Jennifer Fenn Lefferts can be reached at jflefferts@yahoo.com