Tuesday, November 29, 2011

U.S. Has Alabama Immigration Law in Its Sights

Alabama's controversial immigration law continues to draw the attention of the U.S. government.  The Justice Department has challenged the constitutionality of Alabama's immigration law, with an appeal of a district court order upholding most of the law pending in the Eleventh Circuit.

A delegation of DOJ attorneys visted Alabama.

"The more we hear, the more we are concerned about the impact of Alabama’s immigration law on a wide range of federal rights,” said Tom Perez, who heads the Justice Department’s Civil Rights Division as an assistant attorney general, at a press conference in Birmingham, Ala.   The quote comes from an article by Tim Mak on POLITICO.COM.

According to POLITICO.COM,

"Perez told reporters that he has heard reports of children dropping out of school due to fears related to the immigration law; that some employers may be using the law as an excuse not to pay workers; and that some people may have been racially profiled after the passage of the immigration statutes. Hundreds of people have made calls to a Justice Department hotline set up to receive complaints about discrimination in the wake of Alabama’s H.B. 56 immigration law, the assistant attorney general noted."

This is not the DOJ's first expression of concerns over the civil rights impact sof Alabama's immigrration law.  In addition to the lawsuit challenging the constitutionality of the law, a few weeks back, Perez had requested information from Alabama school districts about changes in enrollment after passage of the law.  Click here for further analysis of that data request.



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