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Sheriff McFadden, Faith Leaders Denounce HB 370


June 24, 2019


Michelle Nealy, mnealy@faithinpubliclife.org, (202)735-7123

Kahran Myers, kmyers@faithinpubliclife.org, (727)742-5193

Sheriff McFadden, Faith Leaders Denounce HB 370

Charlotte, N.C. — On Monday, June 24th faith and community leaders called on the North Carolina Senate to vote “No” on HB 370. The bill, which has already passed the House, would require North Carolina sheriffs to work with Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) to arrest and detain North Carolinians assumed to be undocumented.

Sheriff Gary McFadden, Mecklenburg County Sheriff:

“I have been, and I will remain, deeply committed to the safety and security of every single person in Mecklenburg County. HB 370 is not only clearly unconstitutional, it eliminates the ability of all sheriffs to make a lawful, law-enforcement related decision that is best for their respective communities. If HB 370 passes, it will be the beginning phase of the erosion of the constitutional powers of the sheriff.”

Danny Celaya, DACA Recipient:

“Everywhere I go, across this country, I see the same issue of immigrant communities being scared to cooperate with police out of fear that it may lead to their deportation. Even growing up, I still remember every time my parents drove past a cop, just telling me and my brother to stay quiet, just out of fear that the police could somehow hear us. We lived in fear our entire lives knowing that if something happened, we couldn’t go to the police.”

Rabbi Judy Schindler, Charlotte Clergy Coalition: 

“We stand here today not as politicians but as religious leaders, committed to faith, committed to the faithful, committed to the oppressed and committed to justice. ‘Justice you shall pursue,’ the text of Deuteronomy teaches. But House Bill 370, if passed, will unlawfully and unjustly detain our immigrant neighbors. HB 370 would force all sheriffs in the state to cooperate with Immigration and Customs Enforcement, and detain immigrants beyond a legally allowable period under the law. HB 370 allows for arrests before evidence is presented before a judge of the alleged crime. ‘You should have one standard of law for foreign and native-born,’ Leviticus teaches, but we do not.“

Imam John Ederer, Muslim Community Center of Charlotte:

“All of the scriptures are in agreement, all of the people of faith. I have met agnostics who are fed up with these types of policies because they respect the humanity of human beings. We are saying NO to HB 370, no to racism. We are people who value life. That uplift the families who bring people together, who do not divide people. Please vote no to HB 370, and we ask our governor to veto it if, unfortunately, Senators cannot live up to the values they claim.”

Rev. Dr. Valerie Rosenquist, Charlotte Clergy Coalition:

“As people of faith, we support families. Family is sacred. This bill is going to allow for families to be ripped apart. As people of faith, we believe in universal human dignity. We were called to love our neighbors as ourselves. This is an attack on human dignity. This is a measure that reflects partisan politics. Partisan politics are being put before public safety. This bill is motivated by the desire for revenge against those sheriffs and other officials who have decided against targeting our immigrant families for political gain.”


Faith in Public Life is a national network of nearly 50,000 clergy and faith leaders united in the prophetic pursuit of justice and the common good.

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