Alabama’s Immigration Law Forever Struck Down

By: Daniel Nardini

Lawndale News Chicago's Bilingual Newspaper - Commentary Every single federal court has ruled against the State of Alabama’s state immigration law. Now, in a lawsuit settlement with a number of civil and human rights organizations that include the Southern Poverty Law Center, the American Civil Liberties Union, the Mexican American Legal Defense and Education Fund, the National Immigration Law Center, and Asian American Advancing for Justice, all provisions of the law is on indefinite hold. Alabama state and local police can no longer demand the “papers” of those whom they suspect are “illegals.” Employers can no longer ask and no longer discriminate against those whom they think are undocumented, and no state agency can demand proof of U.S. citizenship for those whom they believe are undocumented.

Also, no one can be punished for “transporting” undocumented from one place to another, or penalizing those landlords who rent to undocumented. This is important because it means that the Latino community will no longer be targeted. Thousands of Latinos fled the state, and those Latinos who stayed found their lives in constant turmoil because of the law. There were hundreds of cases of Latinos being harassed, denied payment from employers, and unable to rent or even go outside of their own homes because of the law. Even many legal Latinos were being denied basic services and legal protections because of the law. The law gave carte blanche to many, many unscrupulous employers who ripped people off, or to landlords who took peoples’ money and provided them with no housing of any kind.

Because of this law, it was hard or almost impossible for so many people to be able to seek redress. This is why the lawsuit was necessary, and why the Alabama state immigration law was declared not only an infringement on the powers of the federal government but also a threat to so many immigrants that they considered themselves targets of discrimination. However, the Southern Poverty Law Center warns that this does not mean the Alabama state legislature will not make another state immigration law or a variation of one. The state was compelled to give in this time. Does this mean they may may not try again to create a similar law? There is always that possibility, but we people of the United States and the people of Alabama must be vigilant that this will not happen again, and those who voted for this law should be voted out by Alabama residents.

Comments are closed.