CA's Yolo County Becomes 29th in Nation to Pass Resolution Opposing the USA Patriot Act

January 28, 2003 12:00 am

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SAN FRANCISCO The Yolo County Board of Supervisors, in a 4-0 vote, passed a resolution today opposing the USA PATRIOT Act and calling upon city and county employees to not participate in racial profiling.

“The people of Yolo County understand that if we sacrifice our civil liberties in the name of the war on terrorism, we lose the very freedom that our country stands for,” said Sanjeev Bery of the American Civil Liberties Union of Northern California. “The ACLU is working with communities throughout the country that are opposing the USA PATRIOT Act and standing up for civil liberties.”

Yolo County joins 28 other communities nationwide that have passed similar resolutions, according to Supervisor Frank Sieferman, Jr., who introduced the resolution.

“When I was sworn in as Yolo County Supervisor I swore to uphold the Constitution of the United States of America,” he said. “The USA PATRIOT Act takes away fundamental rights from citizens and non-citizens and causes federal, state, and local government agencies to be involved in racial profiling and unwarranted searches. Like many cities and counties across America I want to make sure that our civil liberties are protected and not sacrificed in the name of national security.”

In California, several cities and towns have passed similar resolutions, including San Francisco, Oakland, Santa Cruz, Arcata, Berkeley, Fairfax, and Sebastopol. Similar efforts are underway in over 50 cities in 25 states.

Specifically, the resolution “affirms that any efforts to end terrorism must not be waged at the expense of vital civil rights and liberties” and calls upon county employees to not “be a part of unlawful racial profiling based on race, ethnicity, citizenship, religion, or political values.” The resolution expresses concern about certain provisions of the federal law that “might infringe on the rights of individual citizens of the County of Yolo, by detaining citizens and non-citizens and engaging in surveillance which threatens the civil rights and liberties guaranteed under the United States Constitution.”

The resolution will be sent to all county departments, the courts, the Governor, the Attorney General of the State of California, the California Congressional delegates, the United States Attorney General and President Bush.

More information about the resolutions, including examples of the actual legislation passed and sample legislation prepared by the ACLU, can be found at /SafeandFree/resolutions

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