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The North STAR Act - A Minnesota that is Safer for Immigrants is Safer for All of Us

February 8, 2024
Photo from the North STAR Act press conference featuring Rep. Feist, Sen. Fateh and supporters.

At 10am on February 8th, 2024, Representative Sandra Feist and Senator Omar Fateh, surrounded by a diverse group of immigrants and activists, officially announced the North STAR Act. The North STAR act intends to protect immigrants in Minnesota by prohibiting state and local law enforcement from using state resources for the purpose of civil immigration enforcement. 

"This bill represents our values as Minnesotans," Rep. Feist said about North STAR. "We don't terrorize our citizens".

One of the main intentions of North STAR is to strengthen the relationship between law enforcement and the immigrant community in Minnesota. Often immigrants who lack legal status are unable access emergency services due to the fear of deportation. 

"Deportation has been a constant shadow in my life," said one of the immigrant supporters of this bill during the press conference. This fear of deportation can mean that immigrants who are a witness or a victim of a crime feel unable to report it. This in turn allows the perpetrators of these crimes to operate with a sense of impunity. The proposed bill would allow immigrants to speak with law enforcement and emergency service providers without fear of legal reprisal. 

"No Minnesotan should have to think twice about calling 911," Sen. Fateh added.

"No Minnesotan should have to think twice about calling 911," Sen. Fateh added. 

The Advocates for Human Rights strongly supports the North STAR bill. Many of our immigrant clients have been victims of crimes, including domestic violence and human trafficking. Too often people have often felt unsafe reaching out for help due to the fear that they would be deported. This bill would allow immigrants and the organizations they work with to more effectively collaborate with law enforcement to help protect them, and to help bring to justice those that would intend to victimize them. 

"This bill is common sense and urgent". Rep. Feist concluded. The full bill language is expected to be released by Monday, February 12th. You can learn more about the North STAR Act by clicking here. 

by Peter Olson, Communications & Outreach Coordinator