Snapshots

Immigrants Prepare for Increased Threats Under “Show Me Your Papers” Enforcement

Ema Cervantes spends most of her time driving all over town to clean houses when she is not ensuring that everything is going well at the flower-shop she owns with her six children.

She used to worry about them being pulled over by police and asked for their papers. But now, while they are protected from deportation under President Obama’s deferred action plan, she is the one at risk with the “show me your papers” provision in the state’s harsh anti-illegal immigration law, SB 1070, going into effect.

“Before, I didn’t worry too much about going everywhere, but now that they want us to show our papers, I’ll go out less,” said the 59-year-old woman from Puebla, Mexico. “I won’t be locked inside (sic), but I’ll take more precaution.”

Yesterday, over the pleas of civil rights groups, U.S. District Court Judge Susan Bolton lifted an injunction on the “papers please” provision, siding with a recent U.S. Supreme Court ruling.

This means, police in Arizona now are required to inquire about a person’s immigration status if they have reasonable suspicion they are in the country illegally. Police could face lawsuits if they fail to enforce the law to the fullest extent.

Concerned that the federal district court might refuse to block the provision that they feel could lead to racial profiling, the American Civil Liberties Union (ACLU), the Mexican American Legal Defense and Educational Fund (MALDEF) and the National Immigration Law Center (NILC) filed an appeal last week with the Ninth Circuit Court of Appeals to enjoin enforcement of that harsh provision.

NILC General Counsel Linton Joaquin said that civil rights groups will continue their efforts to block this provision.

Those efforts include calling the hotline, 1-855-737-7386 , if someone believes he or she was the target of racial profiling during a traffic stop.

The biggest question mark on how this portion of the law will impact immigrants like Cervantes depends on the Office of Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE).

“As we’ve previously emphasized, Department of Homeland Security (DHS) officials in Arizona have been directed not to respond to requests from state and local police officers for assistance in enforcing immigration laws unless the individual or individuals in question meet DHS’ enforcement priorities,” said Amber Cargile, a spokesperson for U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE), in a statement. “Those priorities include convicted criminals, individuals who have previously been removed from the United States and recent border crossers.”

ENTIRE ARTICLE HERE: Immigrants Prepare for Increased Threats Under “Show Me Your Papers” Enforcement.

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