The Alliance for Hispanic Commercial Contractors (“AHCC”) is dedicated in promoting the growth, prosperity and participation of Hispanic Commercial Contractors in commercial and government procurement contracts through education, training and guidance. Over 6% of Howard County residents identify as Hispanic and that population is growing year by year. We are a central part of the 21st Century economy and intend to play an integral role in Maryland’s growth in the years to come.
Howard County is comprised of immigrants from all over the world who contribute to our community’s social vitality, cultural richness, and economic strength. Fostering an inclusive environment, where immigrants and in particularly, Hispanics who are opening businesses at 15 times the national average, are welcomed and valued.
As such, we are formally supporting Bill CB9-2017. The Bill, nicknamed the “Sanctuary Bill” introduced by Council Members Calvin Ball and Jennifer Terrasa, provides that certain individuals shall take, or refrain from taking, specified actions with respect to the immigration status of specified individuals; prohibiting certain discrimination based on citizenship status; requiring that certain information related to citizenship status be kept confidential; providing a procedure whenever specified provisions may be preempted by other law; requiring specified officials to take actions under certain circumstances; and generally relating to human rights in Howard County.
The legislation emphasizes that Howard County Council must act now to now and always to uphold our commitment to be a community free of prejudice, bigotry, and hate by declaring Howard County a sanctuary county. This address the rights of Non-U.S. Citizens, as it pertains to Law Enforcement, Immigrations
The legislation does NOT prevent investigating or arresting violators of the criminal law, or assisting a federal agency with investigations or arrests. The Legislation Proposes the following for Employees of Howard County Law Enforcement agencies:
- NO ENFORCEMENT OF IMMIGRATION LAWS.
- NO INQUIRIES INTO CITIZENSHIP, NATIONALITY, OR IMMIGRATION STATUS; OR THE CITIZENSHIP OR IMMIGRATION STATUS OF ANOTHER PERSON.
We commend Councilmen Calvin Ball and Jennifer Terrasa for introducing this legislation to espouse the value of human rights, and to respect the rights of and providing equal services and access to all individuals, regardless of race, ethnicity, or immigration status. Sadly, the recent national political climate is creating a scary environment, supportive of xenophobia, Islamophobia, and ugly racial sentiments within our community, resulting in increased incidents of hate crimes and speeches, threatening our immigrants, including our kids and students.
By 2050, Minorities will be the majority in the US and 40% of Fortune 500 Firms have been established by immigrants. The U.S. Chamber of Commerce 2012 Small Business study finds a clear trend has been in the growth of minority and immigrant enterprises. Between 1982 and 2007, for example, Asian-American–owned by 545% and businesses owned by whites by 81%; while Hispanic – American-owned businesses grew by an impressive 696%. Today, minority-owned, including those owned by immigrants, businesses make up 21% of the nation’s 27 million small businesses…
Allowing the increased negativity and rhetoric to persist would not just dampen the economic vibrancy of this region, but would alienate immigrant entrepreneurs and individuals. Further restricting the vibrancy and growth of Howard County and Maryland.
We urge the council to resolutely pass this legislation to ensure Howard County and the region continue to be a supportive and inclusive environment to Immigrants, especially Hispanic entrepreneurs. And we encourage YOU to use your voice and also support this legislation by
CALLING: Howard County Council Members
|District||Council Member||Special Assistant||Phone|
|District 1||Jon Weinstein||JWeinstein@HowardCountyMD.gov||Gary L. Smith||(410) 313-3110|
|District 2||Dr. Calvin Ball||CBBall@HowardCountyMD.gov||Kim Pruim||(410) 313-2001|
|District 3||Jen Terrasa||JTerrasa@HowardCountyMD.gov||Kate McLeod||(410) 313-3108|
|District 4||Mary Kay Sigaty||MKSigaty@HowardCountyMD.gov||Mary Clay||(410) 313-2001|
|District 5||Greg Fox||GFox@HowardCountyMD.gov||Karen Knight||(410) 313-2001|
TESTIFYNG: Howard County Council, George Howard Building, 3430 Court House Drive, Ellicott City, MD 21043
Let’s get the year started effectively, by using our voice.