An immigration forum was held in Storm Lake, Iowa Saturday.
STORM LAKE, Iowa (KTIV) -
The community of Storm Lake, Iowa is one of the most diverse in the entire state, making immigration policy a hot topic.
Saturday, local law enforcement met with locals to talk about the issues.
A three-part forum in Storm Lake took a look at immigration in Iowa. One of the most informative portions of the forum centered around temporary drivers licenses and the Secure Communities program.
Storm Lake Police Chief Mark Prosser says that he's in favor of granting temporary licenses to undocumented immigrants.
But with a temporary license must come driver and safety education, as well as the ability to be insured.
It has yet to be passed by the Iowa legislature and there are still a lot of questions.
"How that might be applied in the state of Iowa for individuals who may not have legal status here but are working and living here and how that impacts public safety, the insured driver and situations like that," said Prosser.
The most controversy comes from the Secure Communities program, in which the immigration status of someone who has been arrested can be checked via shared fingerprint databases between local law enforcement and U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement.
Storm Lake does not participate in this program.
"We have enough on our hands to do other than the enforcement of immigration law," said Prosser. "We really work in a nonstop fashion in building relationships and bridges with all the citizens that we serve in our community."
These are issues that are especially important to Storm Lake due to their high diversity.
"We still have to serve the citizens of our community despite their immigration status, no matter what their language is spoken," said Prosser. "We have to serve them."
Representatives from both Buena Vista and Story counties were on hand to discuss the issues with the people.
Wednesday, August 27 2014 2:48 AM EDT2014-08-27 06:48:05 GMT
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