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Sonoma needs to become a sanctuary city

Posted on December 19, 2016 by Sonoma Valley Sun

Editor: The following letter was presented to Sonoma’s City Council

I have lived in Sonoma for over 30 years. And for 15 years before I moved here I came up on holidays and weekends to visit relatives. I love the small town community feel and, with all of the incredible wineries, restaurants, shops and entertainment it has to offer, it is the best of both worlds.

I would like to see our community thrive for many years to come. But, in order to do that, in order to keep it this way, I believe we need to be more proactive.

Because Sonoma is primarily an agricultural and hospitality oriented town, we need our work force in order to keep the businesses open. Many people in our work force are now faced with possible deportation.

What are we going to do if we have no field workers to harvest the grapes? What are we going to do if we have no people to cook, wait tables, change beds, wash dishes or cater our parties? What are we going to do with the American born children that discover they have been abandoned, because while they were in school their parents got arrested and are going to be deported?

In October of 2013 Governor Brown declared California a sanctuary state. Just recently Oakland and San Francisco became sanctuary cities. If becoming a sanctuary city is both moral and practical, why don’t we do it?

We need to stay the inclusive and diverse city that we have always been. We need to respect all of our community members – regardless of immigration status, county of origin, race, religion, political affiliation, economic status, age, gender-identity or sexual orientation. We need to become a sanctuary city.

It is quite possible that be being pro-active in this, we could become an inspiration for other leaders of other cities. And just maybe our influence might stretch far beyond our city, our county, our state – into a nationwide plan of action.

We need to plan for our future. We still have a housing crisis on our hands. I respectfully request that this housing crisis be put on your agenda so that we can open a discussion about it. The Spiritual Action group has a resolution that has some good ideas that need to be seriously considered.

We need to provide more low rent housing for our work force. We need our work force. They are a very large part of what makes Sonoma the city that it is.


Mechelle Richey

2 thoughts on “Sonoma needs to become a sanctuary city

  1. Trump is getting traction because there are a lot who are pretty fed up with the stream of people self inviting themselves . I do agree with what Trump said , that nobody wants to talk about it . It’s said that the illegals coming are wanting a better life .True . But there are folks all over the world wanting to come to the U.S.A .Can we let them all in ? No , No ,no , we can’t .We just can’t .It’s really a population problem .Who wants a garbage landfill near their area , anybody ? I’ll take that as a NO . How about water ? Is there plenty ? Certainly not in California .How about roads , hospital emergency rooms , schools , police and fire protection ? No problem ? Is there ANYWHERE in the whole country where any of these public agencies aren’t screaming for more and more money ? I think you get the idea .So , a border is necesary . There is not enough resources for everybody , so somebody is told no .The Mexicans / Latin Americans have the advantage of location . do you think there are North Koreans , Pakistani , Iranian , Syrian , Ethiopian , Etc. people who would want to come ? Of coarse there are .So we have to tell somebody no . Oh , but if your Mexican , you get preference .That’s not discriminatory ?And there , my freinds , is the problem . Some people don’t want to take no for an answer .So they strong arm their way across .The people who apply legally are just SOL ? That’s just fine with the sanctuary crowd ? The only thing that wil stop gate crashers is brute force .Political correctness and signs in Espanol have not worked and never will .Trumps wall idea is a joke .Did he suggest the Mexican government would pay for it ? Right .Fat flipping chance .So now we get down to the method of border defense .No one wants to talk about that .Because it can be done , but it would likely hurt and even kill people , and that gets extremely ugly .Many don’t want to do that , so the invasion continues . You can allow maybe 3 , 5 % of the peole who want to come in to actually do it .That’s not many . So , I do think Trump is a dolt but I like that he said we have to control the border .If you disagree , take a trip to North Korea , Iran ,or Russia and see how your greeted crossing one of those borders illegally. Better bring your bullet resistant vest .

  2. When reality strikes, we should question,who will pay for it. Sanctuary Cities to protect those who break our laws repeatively are ineffective to those who actually have to obey the laws on a Daily Basis.
    Those persons in favor of giving sanctuary and also giving a free pass from the laws the rest of us have to obey shoud be identified and have their assets used to pay for those whom they wish to give such sanctuary to.
    Does this sound unreasonable? Or does this sound fair to those of us who love watching our laws continue to be broken at the cost of ignorance.
    Laws are enforcd to protect our society but if we give a free pass to those who refuse to assimulate into our society as millions have done before,then we openly take a chance of destroying what protects our society as a whole.
    So many undocumented workers are doung more than just working, they are creating families and also sending money out of country which actually supports another countrys infrastructure and not that of which they are creating families in.
    That money when they are sending to their country of origin, should be used to continue the infratructure which they are assuming they are a part of.
    Instead what we we are ignoring is the actual cost of education, community taxes and support for the communities which they are living in.
    What is the cost of a sanctuary city? As the parents of the child killed in front of Robs Rib Shack years ago, the woman who died on Fishermans Warf or your childs education…..

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