The mayor of Montvale, NJ is refusing to sign legislation that will turn it into a sanctuary city. Mayor Michael Ghassali, a Syrian immigrant, has made a very public announcement on Facebook stating that it’s not a mayor’s place to be “advocating the defiance of federal laws.”
As a Syrian immigrant whose family fled Aleppo in 1980, weeks before hundreds of civilians were killed in a brutal siege, Michael Ghassali knows well the horrors facing today’s refugees.
But as the mayor of Montvale, Ghassali said, his allegiance is to the laws of his adopted country – even those he may personally disagree with.
That is why Ghassali has vowed that under his administration, Montvale will not be a sanctuary city.
“I will not be signing any executive orders that will ask our employees to defy federal laws. A mayor should not be advocating the defiance of federal laws,” Ghassali announced in a Facebook post last week that has elicited both praise and condemnation.
The statement was in response to pressure from various advocacy groups that Ghassali said have approached him to declare the borough a safe haven for undocumented immigrants.