NorCal Resist recently sent 15 people to help at the southern border. An event was hosted at the First United Methodist Church where community members could ask questions and discuss issues such as intersectionality and youth involvement, and how they impact asylum law.
About Julia Sidley
Posts by Julia Sidley:
The word expunge is defined as “to erase or remove completely something unwanted or unpleasant.” In the process of law, expungement is when criminal records can be destroyed or sealed off to help improve the quality of life for these people. The expungement of records is often available to first-time offenders. Many violent crimes cannot be expunged however expungement is often used to seal off these record of people convicted of drug possession. Expungement is helpful to those who find it difficult to find a job or start fresh after a conviction and can help someone trying to start a new life.
Expungement law changed in California with Penal Code Section 851.91. The Rudolph E. Loewenstein Law Firm wrote “The great thing about this legislation is that if you qualify under its provisions it is a matter of right and the judge cannot refuse to grant the petition.” The legislation makes expungement more accessible to Californians, leading to a rise in expungement clinics in California. Expungement clinics are events where a person can work with attorneys to clear or reduce their record in order to improve job prospects. While expungement laws vary by state, these clinics have become more and more common in an attempt to help combat rising drug arrest rates that disproportionately impact marginalized communities.
The American River College Legal Clinic will be holding expungement clinics on the second Saturday of the month from February to May. This clinic can expunge convictions from California Courts. American River College Legal Assisting Students will be facilitating the clinics and helping participants file their reports and attorneys from the Wiley Manual Bar Association, as well as the Cruz Reynoso Bar Association, will be present to help answer questions and look over applications. More information regarding the event can be found here.
On October 10th of this year, the Trump administration issued a statement attempting to change admissibility requirements on the basis of the Immigration and Nationality Act. These proposed changes would cause difficulty for immigrant communities as it would change the requirements for someone to receive legal permanent residence, or “LPR status”, based on previous use of public benefits, labeling them as a “public charge” and more likely to become dependent on these programs. These changes have raised issues, as they would make programs such as food stamps, public housing, and Medicaid less available to immigrant communities.
Many state Attorneys General have spoken out against this proposed change. Xavier Becerra, California’s state Attorney General, published a letter regarding these proposed changes to public charge and how they would affect California’s communities. Becerra called the proposal “…an arbitrary and capricious attack with no legal justification.” Dr. Robert K. Ross of the California Endowment issued a public statement in response to the proposal saying, “This draft rule will also have far-reaching, and potentially lasting impacts on the health of families and children beyond those directly targeted by the proposed rule because, regardless of immigration status, fear and confusion will lead many families to withdraw from benefits to which they have a legal right.”
The legal implications of these changes are far-reaching and nationwide but at the same very personal and will drastically change many California communities. As Becerra explained, California is proudly home to more than 10 million immigrants and these changes would be unconstitutional, target marginalized and vulnerable populations, undermine public health, and create a “chilling effect” in communities.
It’s clear to many that these proposed changes to admissibility requirements would drastically harm the health and well-being of American communities. While the public comment period for the proposal has closed, it is still important that the public remains aware of what is happening in regards to immigration policy so that they may engage in discourse and advocacy to improve the state of the nation.
My name is Julia Sidley, I was born in October of 2002 in Sacramento California. I am currently a junior at West Campus High School. I am extremely dedicated to my academics however my high school career has been characterized by my role in the Film and Debate programs at my school.
The West Campus Video Production program has played a very large role in my life these past three years. I established the program my freshman year and it has continued to grow as a program and became a family. I worked with my close friends and we were able to get grants and turn our club into a family.
Finally but probably most notably I am a policy debater. The policy debate community has shaped me in ways beyond words. If I am not at school, editing, or filming I am probably in a coffee shop somewhere with my teammates reading dozens of books and law review articles about anything ranging from the philosophy of Agamben, Foucault, and Baudrillard to specific policies and current events. I have learned more as a part of this community than I have from any other group of people. Because I am a part of this community, I better understand how the world functions around me and I cannot wait to continue learning and growing with them.
In conclusion, my passions for research and communication are wholly representative of my goals in life; to educate myself as best I can and share what I have learned with those around me. I am so grateful for the opportunities I have been provided at AccessLocal.tv and I cannot wait to share what I can create.