In 2020, CAIR-California is focusing its advocacy efforts on 16 bills.

Everyone, including members of the state Legislature, is currently affected by the COVID-19 pandemic. Accordingly, some bills may be reintroduced next year. CAIR-CA will update the community and its priorities as needed.

To help us advocate for legislation, find your representative here.

MDAC bills

1a) Refugees: AB 3133 – resettlement

(Authors: Assembly members Aguiar-Curry and Reyes. Co-authors: Assembly members Berman, Gonzalez, Rodriguez; Senators Archuleta and Wiener.)

Federal Executive Order 13888 generally prohibits a refugee from being resettled in a state or locality if the state or locality has not consented, in writing, to the resettlement of refugees. The Executive Order requires the United States Secretary of State and the United States Secretary of Health and Human Services to implement a process to determine if a state or locality consents. AB 3133 would prohibit a refugee from being denied resettlement in California based on specified protected characteristics.

1b) Refugees: AB 3134 social services

(Authors: Assembly members Aguiar-Curry and Reyes)

This bill would require an additional eight months of refugee cash assistance payments to a refugee after the payment of federally funded cash aid benefits has been exhausted. The bill would require the transition from federally funded refugee cash assistance payments to state-funded cash assistance payments to be seamless and would prohibit a refugee from being required to reapply for state cash assistance if the refugee is otherwise eligible. By imposing additional duties on counties, this bill would impose a state-mandated local program.

Additional Priority Bills

2) Government preferences: ACA 5 – Opportunity for All

(Authors: Assembly members Weber and Gipson. Co-authors: Assembly members Gonzalez, Jones-Sawyer, Kamlager; Senator Mitchell.)

This bill would create equal opportunities for all Californians and fight discrimination against women and people of color by restoring affirmative action in public contracting, public employment and public education.

3) Human rights/Civil rights: AB 2487 – California Commission on Human Rights

(Author: Assembly member Reyes)

This bill would establish a committee in the state government that would be required to identify and evaluate the successes and failures in protecting human rights of individuals in the state. Also would report annually the status of human rights to the Legislature and the governor with suggestions.

4) Climate change: AB 1839 – California Green New Deal

(Authors: Assembly members Bonta, Chiu, Kalra, Reyes, and Weber. Co-authors: Assembly members Berman, Bloom, Chu, Gloria, McCarty, Rivas, Stone, and Wicks.)

The California Green New Deal is a bill that seeks to provide a commitment by the state to establish a policy framework of goals and principles to address the negative impacts of climate change and social inequality in California, which includes API communities.

5a) Detention: AB 3181 – Due Process in Detention Program

(Authors: Assembly members Bonta and Reyes)

This bill would require any facility in the state that detains, confines, or holds an individual in custody to develop written policies and procedures to ensure persons detained have access to basic minimum standards with respect to due process and access to the court and to legal counsel and the minimum standards specified in state regulations. The bill would require the State Department of Social Services to establish the Due Process in Detention Program to provide individual consultations where unrepresented individuals can consult with an attorney, develop a statewide referral network with legal service providers, and monitor access to legal resources, courts, and counsel for individuals in detention. The bill would require the department to collect and publicly report data from each immigration detention center, as specified.

5B) Detention: AB 3228 – Private detention facilities

(Author: Assembly member Bonta)

This bill would build on AB 32, AB 103 and AB 3228 by ensuring that all detention facility operators in the state of California adhere to the detention standards agreed upon in the contract for the facility. The bill would provide for a cause of action in state court for any violations of the agreed upon standards. The bill would also ensure that detention facilities abide by and uphold basic human rights and standards in the treatment of civil detainees. This bill would also establish a working group to monitor and improve detention conditions.

6) Voting Rights: AB 1276 – Local redistricting

(Author: Assembly member Bonta)

This bill would provide that these criteria do not apply to a charter city that has adopted comprehensive or exclusive redistricting criteria, as defined, in its city charter. The bill would authorize the city council of a charter city to instead establish an advisory body to hold public redistricting hearings. The bill would clarify that if a council assigns the power to adopt new district boundaries to an advisory, hybrid, or independent redistricting commission, the charter city remains subject to the same redistricting deadlines, requirements, and restrictions that are applicable to the council.

7) Department of Consumer Affairs: AB 2597 – The Sanctuary Contracting Act

(Author: Assembly member Bonta)

UPDATE: This bill is now in the Assembly Accountability and Administrative Review Committee.

AB 2597 would prohibit any state agency from entering into, or renewing a contract, with a private business entity that supplies “data broker” or “extreme vetting” (analytics) services to federal immigration agencies on or after Jan. 1, 2021. This bill would require the Department of General Services to identify and update a list of vendors that provide data or extreme vetting services to Immigration Customs Enforcement (ICE), California Border Patrol (CBP) and the Office of Refugee Resettlement (ORR).

8) Department of Justice: AB 2917 – law enforcement policies on the use of deadly force

(Author: Assembly member McCarty)

This bill would require that the attorney general create a program with the Department of Justice to review policies on the use of deadly force of any law enforcement agency, that requests a review and to make recommendations. Building on last year’s work regarding use of force through AB 392, AB 2917 is another tool for law enforcement to continue restoring public trust and to further implement best practices.

9) Elections: AB 646 – voter eligibility

(Author: Assembly member McCarty; co-author: Assembly member Gonzalez)

Existing law prohibits a person who is on parole for the conviction of a felony from voting, registering to vote, or preregistering to vote. This bill would remove those prohibitions, thereby allowing a parolee to preregister, register, and vote, and make other technical and conforming changes. This bill would become operative only if ACA 6 of the 2019-20 Regular Session, below, is approved by voters.

10) Elections, disqualification of electors: ACA 6 – Free the vote

(Authors: Assembly members McCarty, Bonta, Carrillo, Gipson, Gonzalez, Kalra, Kamlager-Dove, Mullin, Stone, and Weber. Principal co-author: Senator Wiener.)

This measure would allow an individual disqualified from voting while serving a state or federal prison term to have their right to vote restored once their prison term is completed.

11) Law enforcement agencies: AB 2598 – Safe CA Civil Rights Act

(Authors: Assembly members Bonta and Chiu)

UPDATE: This bill will no longer be moving forward this year.

This bill would explicitly require California law enforcement agencies to follow state and local laws and policies at all times, and create transparency and oversight measures for agencies participating in the Federal Bureau of Investigation’s (“FBI”) Joint Terrorism Task Force (“JTTF”).

12) Criminal procedure, discrimination: AB 2200 – Racial Justice Act

(Author: Assembly member Kalra. Co-authors: Assembly members Chu, Jones-Sawyer, Kamlager, Levine, McCarty, Ting, Weber, Wicks; Senators Bradford and Mitchell.)

UPDATE: This bill will no longer be moving forward this year.

AB 2200 would establish the California Racial Justice Act which would prohibit the state from seeking or obtaining a criminal conviction, or from imposing a sentence, based upon race, ethnicity or national origin. Specifically, the act would make it possible for a person charged or convicted of a crime to challenge racial bias in their case, as shown through evidence of: 1) Explicit racial bias by an attorney, judge, law enforcement officer, expert witness, or juror involved in the case. 2) Use of racially discriminatory language in court and during the criminal proceedings, whether or not intentional. 3) Racial bias in jury selection, such as removing all or nearly all people of color from the jury. 4) Statistical disparities in charging and convictions – that is, evidence that people of one race are disproportionately charged or convicted of a specific crime or enhancement. 5) Statistical disparities in sentencing – that is, evidence that people of one race receive longer or more severe sentences, including the death penalty or life without parole.

13) Privacy: SB 1010 – The Safety, Accountability, Freedom, Economic Opportunity (SAFE) Act

(Author: Senator Jackson)

UPDATE: This bill will no longer be moving forward this year.

This bill would:

  • Implement a five-year moratorium on law enforcement use of biometric surveillance;
  • Permanently prohibit law enforcement use of systems like Clearview, which sells its services to both California police and ICE;
  • Permanently prohibit the DMV and other government entities from sharing our photos for face surveillance;
  • Require a study of facial recognition use in the state; and
  • Preserve the ability of local communities to pass bans.
14) Criminal law: AB 2596 – immigrants – VISION Act

(Authors: Assembly members Bonta and Chiu)

UPDATE: This bill will no longer be moving forward this year.

The VISION Act would protect individuals who were convicted for offenses committed as youth and have earned release from the California Department of Corrections and Rehabilitation (CDCR) from being transferred to immigration authorities for deportation purposes. This bill also would prevent immigrants who are eligible for release from jail custody from being transferred to immigration authorities for deportation purposes.

CAIR-CA opposes the following bills:

1) Crime prevention and criminal investigation/prosecution: SB 1298 – Terrorist and Criminal Organization Investigation Teams

(Author: Senator Stern)

This bill would require the attorney general to create Terrorist and Criminal Organization Investigation Teams, to be located throughout the state, to proactively coordinate efforts to thwart terrorism activity and criminal opportunities before they occur. The bill would also require Department of Justice personnel to be trained on state and federal guidelines, as specified. This raises concerns that there will be an increase in the surveillance of marginalized communities of color for the sake of following terrorist and criminal investigation protocol, which further erodes community trust and public safety.

2) Surveillance: AB 2261 – Facial recognition technology

(Author: Assembly member Chau)

UPDATE: This bill is now in the Assembly Privacy Committee.

AB 2261 would erase important laws adopted by local public officials for the protection of basic rights and public safety, and it would give companies and governments a blank check to use facial recognition to track, deny economic opportunities, and discriminate against marginalized communities.

CAIR California is a chapter of America’s largest Muslim civil liberties and advocacy organization. Its mission is to enhance the understanding of Islam, encourage dialogue, protect civil liberties, empower American Muslims, and build coalitions that promote justice and mutual understanding.