Safe Neighborhoods

MPU believes that children deserve to grow up in safe and family-friendly neighborhoods that are free of gun violence and fear of deportation.


We work to continue creating safer neighborhoods throughout the Commonwealth so that all children can grow up in communities they are proud to call home.


Gun Safety in Schools

  • In 2018, there were over 60 shootings that occurred on school campuses across the United States.

  • In Massachusetts, a large number of local law enforcement and school officials have indicated that they have adopted ALICE (Alert, Lockdown, Inform, Counter, Evacuate) training in their school safety plans.

  • As of May 2017, approximately 220 Massachusetts public school districts are currently participating in ALICE training. PARENTS: Ask your school leaders if they have adopted ALICE training.



Impact of Gun Violence

  • Gun violence is now the second leading cause of death for American children. Compared to other countries, American children are 14 times more likely to be killed with guns.

  • Gun violence disproportionately impacts black children and teens, who are 4 times more likely than white children and teens to be killed with guns.

  • About 35 percent of child and teen gun deaths are suicides, whereas 60 percent of child gun deaths are due to homicides connected to domestic or family violence.

  • In the United States, approximately 4.6 million minors in the US live in homes with at least one loaded, unlocked firearm.



Red Flag Legislation

  • Red Flag legislation is a gun safety policy in which family members or law enforcement officials have the authority to request an Extreme Risk Protection Order (ERPO) for an individual they believe is a danger to themselves or others, temporarily restricting their access to firearms.

  • Red Flag legislation lowers rates of gun inflicted suicide and gun inflicted homicide, particularly in situations of domestic abuse, where families and household members can petition for the ERPO giving them autonomy over their safety.

  • An ERPO can be filed by “a family or household member of the respondent or a law enforcement officer or agency having jurisdiction over the respondent’s residence.” Within 14 days of filing the ERPO, the Court will set a hearing date. If the Court finds enough evidence to deem the individual as being in danger of causing personal injury to self or others, the Court will issue the ERPO, prohibiting the individual from purchasing or possessing a firearm for one year, subject to renewal.

  • Thirteen states, including Massachusetts, have currently enacted Red Flag Laws.





Immigration in Massachusetts

  • In Massachusetts, immigrants make up 16% of the state’s population.

  • Nearly 1 in 6 individuals in Massachusetts are immigrants.

  • Immigrants are an important part of every community as workers, business owners, taxpayers, and neighbors. One out of every five of the Massachusetts work force is foreign born, supporting our state’s industries and economy.


  • Regardless of your immigration or citizenship status, all individuals have constitutional rights.

  • You have the right to remain silent and you do not have to answer questions about where you were born or whether you are a U.S. citizen.

  • You have the right to talk to a lawyer.

  • You have the right to refuse a search of yourself, your car, or your home without a warrant.

  • If officers are at your door, you have the right to keep the door closed and ask the officers what they are there for. It is safer to speak to officers through the door.

  • If the officers want to enter, ask them if they have a warrant signed by a judge. If they don't have a warrant signed by a Judge, you have the right to refuse to open the door or let them in.

  • Do not lie or show false documents. Do not sign any papers without speaking to a lawyer





Sanctuary Cities

  • Sanctuary cities help make immigrant families feel more welcome and choose to leave the enforcement of immigration laws to ICE (Immigration and Customs Enforcement) rather than using their local officers to assist in the enforcement of immigration laws.

  • Current Sanctuary Cities in Massachusetts include:

    • Amherst

    • Boston

    • Cambridge

    • Concord

    • Lawrence

    • Newton

    • Northhampton

    • Somerville

  • In 2017, the Massachusetts Supreme Judicial Court ruled that a person cannot be held solely due to an ICE detainer (Commonwealth v. Lunn). Previously, ICE detainers allowed for a local court or law enforcement agency to hold a person who would otherwise be released from custody in order to assist the deportation process. Read more on this ruling from ACLU Massachusetts and MIRA here.



  • Sanctuary cities experience 15 percent less crime than typical non-sanctuary cities.

  • On average, the poverty rate is 2.3 percent lower in sanctuary counties compared to non-sanctuary counties.



Helpful Resources


School Guides

School leaders, administrators, and teachers:

Are you ready to talk to your families about immigration?

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Keri Rodrigues, Mom-in-Chief

Massachusetts Parents United

388 Pleasant Street, Suite  305.
Malden, MA 02148



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© 2017 Massachusetts Parents United

388 Pleasant Street Suite 305, Malden, MA 02148.