Salem City Council Votes to Oppose Measure 105

Never before have Salem city councilors voted to endorse or oppose a ballot measure issue. But when it came to Measure 105, councilors felt the ballot measure poses such a threat to the local community that they simply could not stay silent. 

Earlier this week Salem city councilors voted 6-3 to oppose Measure 105. Members of the public came out in force to express their opposition to the measure.

Shelaswau Crier, a candidate for Marion County Commissioner, referred to Oregon's current law as a safeguard against racial profiling. "As a woman of color — particularly as the mother of black boys — I know what racial profiling feels like," she said. "I know what it feels like for someone to call 911 on my son because he looked suspicious while standing at the bus stop to go to school; to be pulled over by cops while walking to school in the morning. And I don't want that for anyone in our community," Crier said.

Salem Police Chief Jerry Moore said that throwing out Oregon's anti-profiling law would have a "chilling" effect on many community members reporting crimes and other issues to the police. "I've worked my entire professional life under this law, and I've seen the impact of all of the issues that we heard about tonight firsthand," Hoy said. "We need to oppose 105 with all of the strength of our voices." 

City Councilor Tom Andersen commented too, saying "All these ballot measures would affect the people of Salem, which is why we ought to take a position on it."

Councilor Chris Hoy said he was an intern in the Oregon Legislature when the sanctuary law passed in the 1980s before he entered law enforcement. "Measure 105 will have a huge impact on every department in the city, especially the Police Department," he said. "It'll have a huge impact on the county jail and our ability to hold people accountable who need to be held accountable. It will impact every person who is an immigrant to this community or may not look like all of us sitting here and their ability to engage with the city and engage with law enforcement."

Thank you, Salem City Council, for doing the right thing. Thank you for opposing Measure 105.

Devon Downeysmith