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Rally in Springfield to support immigration rights, Trust Act and Safe Driving Act

SPRINGFIELD — Supporters of immigration rights plan a rally in Springfield on Saturday in support of two bills they say will keep the state safer.

The rally is scheduled to begin at 12:30 p.m. at All Souls Church, 449 Plainfield St., in Springfield.

The bills are known as the Trust Act and the Safe Driving Act, according to a statement from organizers.

The Trust Act would prevent individuals released by judges and magistrates from then being detained by Immigration and Customs Enforcement officers.

The bill would also clarify that it is not the responsibility of local law enforcement officials to enforce federal immigration laws.

The Safe Driving Act would provide drivers licenses to undocumented immigrants if they pass a driving test and carry liability insurance.

Supporters say instructing drivers and making them carry insurance makes the roads safer for all. Opponents object to rewarding people in the country illegally with the privilege of a driver’s license.

Rally organizers said in a statement that adopting these bills would make Massachusetts safer for all and steer the state away from the type of immigration policies in place in Arizona.

To make that point, organizers said they will symbolically revoke the residency of Arizona’s Maricopa County Sheriff Joseph Arpaio, a supporter of strict immigration enforcement and native of Springfield.

“Sheriff Arpaio represents a hatred and intolerance that has no place in our town,” Alvaro Ramirez, a member of Just Communities of Western Massachusetts, said in a statement. “We want a safe Massachusetts, a place where we can trust our law enforcement to serve and protect without any risk of being tangled in the dirty work of deportation and family separation.”

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