[ sangk-choo-er-ee sit-ee ]
/ ˈsæŋk tʃuˌɛr i ˌsɪt i /
a city in which the local government and police protect undocumented immigrants and refugees from deportation by federal authorities: sanctuary cities where law enforcement cannot question crime suspects about their immigration status.
Origin of sanctuary city
First recorded in 1865–70 in the sense “place of immunity from arrest”; the current sense, in 1980–85; possibly related to “Cities of Refuge” named in the Bible in the books of Joshua, Deuteronomy, and Numbers
Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2019