KERA: Supreme Court Arizona Ruling Impacts Farmers Branch

On June 26, 2012 Bill Zeeble (KERA) wrote:

The U.S. Supreme Court ruling in Arizona may shut down any more attempted restrictions on Farmers Branch apartment renters.

The court struck down most of an Arizona law targeting illegal immigrants. Farmers Branch wanted to make all renters get citizenship clearance before they could move in. But David Hinojosa, with the Mexican American Legal Defense and Educational Fund (MALDEF), said the Farmers Branch law was thrown out in lower court, and the Supreme Court ruling just confirms that.

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Tucson Examiner: New study shows importance of immigrants to U.S. economy

By Luke Witman, March 18, 2012:

Earlier this month, the Federation for American Immigration Reform debuted a new advertising campaign urging the federal government to restrict the number of legal immigrants admitted to the U.S. each year. FAIR argues that in our current economy, we need to work to preserve the paucity of available jobs for natural born U.S. citizens. Many have repeatedly made the same argument, especially during periods of economic distress: immigrants come and take our jobs, so we need to restrict how many can come in the first place. However, it has yet to be proven that stricter immigration controls will in any way reduce unemployment in this country.

A new study by the Brookings Institution and the Partnership for a New Economy actually reveals quite the opposite, essentially showing that natural born citizens and immigrants are rarely in competition for the same jobs. In both the skilled and unskilled labor markets, immigrants in fact inhabit a unique position, taking jobs that non-immigrants are too often unwilling or unable to take. Thus, the study reveals that the U.S. economy is actually dependent on an immigrant workforce, and severe restriction of the number of immigrants allowed to enter this country could be a detriment to our nation’s economy.  Read more …

WRAL.com: Man on hunger strike for illegal immigrants

Dreamers arrested for disrupting a legislative hearing about immigration in North Carolina.  Uriel Alberto is still in jail:

Raleigh, N.C. — A Winston-Salem man on a hunger strike at the Wake County jail and facing deportation says that he wants to bring attention to U.S. immigration laws and how they are affecting immigrants who have been raised in America yet cannot obtain citizenship as adults.

“I had no control over whether or not I wanted to come to this country, but I’m here, and I’m a contributing member of society,” 24-year-old Uriel Alberto, an illegal immigrant from Mexico, said Monday.

Alberto began fasting 10 days ago – two days after he and two other people with the advocacy groups El Cambio and N.C. Dream Team – were charged Feb. 29 with misdemeanor disorderly conduct after they interrupted a legislative committee meeting on immigration laws.

“The last two days have been extremely difficult to stay with it mentally,” he said. “I’m getting through it.”

Already having lost 20 pounds, he plans to fast another 10 days in an effort to empower others to speak out for the way, he says, illegal immigrants have to live under the radar and often fear being deported.

“We can’t live in the shadows, because if we do, then the same things that have happened (legislation regarding illegal immigrants) in Alabama and in Arizona are going to happen here,” Alberto said.  Read more …

HuffPo Latino Voices: California DUI Checkpoint Program Targets Undocumented Immigrants

Escondido, California continues to vie for most anti-immigrant and anti-Latino city in America.  Ugg. Sara Gates reports:

For every drunk driver, Escondido police pick up about 10 unlicensed drivers — a majority of which are undocumented immigrants. DUI road barriers effectively serve as immigration checkpoints in this California town.

According to a new report from KPBS news in San Diego, this policy is one of many recent initiatives by the Escondido police that directly target undocumented immigrants and the Latino population — 49 percent of Escondido’s 145,000 residents.

Other policies include proposed restrictions on food carts and parking in Latino neighborhoods and a 2006 ban on rental properties for anyone without proof of legal residency. However, the later restraint was ruled unconstitutional and ultimately discontinued.

Escondido police paired with U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) in 2010 to initiate “Operation Joint Effort,” which instituted dual DUI-immigration checkpoints.

The city is the first in the country to strike up such an agreement with ICE, so that the agency is informed whenever an undocumented immigrant is suspected. ICE also maintains an office at the local police station.  Read more …

WNYC: Solidarity Between Immigrants, Civil Rights Marchers After Ala. HB 56 Ruling

On March 9, 2012, Sarah Kate Kramer writes:

Immigrants in Alabama are pushing back against the controversial immigration law HB 56, and it’s working.

In the same week as thousands of Latinos are marching with African American leaders to commemorate the bloody civil rights march from Selma to Montgomery that took place 47 years ago, a federal appeals court temporarily blocked two more sections of HB 56 on Thursday.

The 11th Circuit Court of Appeals enjoined Sections 27 and 30 of the state law until legal challenges brought by the federal government and a coalition of church and civil rights groups are resolved.

The state legislature passed HB 56, a law targeting undocumented immigrants in June 2011, and it immediately gained notoriety as the toughest immigration law in the country. In September, Federal Judge Sharon Lovelace Blackburn issued preliminary injunctions against a few provisions of the law, including one prohibiting undocumented immigrants from attending public universities, another that outlawed harboring or transporting undocumented immigrants and a third that outlawed stopping for day laborers if a motor vehicle blocked traffic. But Judge Blackburn left intact two of the most controversial elements of the law. Read more …

NYT: Illegal Immigrants Get Scholarships While Aid Bill Idles

Kirk Semple reports on March 8, 2012:

Among all the numbers that populate Nataly Lopez’s life — including phone digits, addresses, pass codes and friends’ ages — there is one that she never forgets: the cost of a semester’s tuition at Baruch College, where she is a sophomore.

Ms. Lopez, 21, is an illegal immigrant from Ecuador and has struggled to make ends meet, working several jobs to be able to pay for school.

“Two thousand eight hundred and five,” she said. “I know that number because I have to reach it to get to the next semester.”

State proposals that would make government financial aid available for illegal immigrants like Ms. Lopez are pending in Albany. Frustrated with the pace of federal and state legislative action, advocacy groups, with the support of New York City officials, have developed a stopgap solution — for a small number of needy students, at least.  Read more…

ClarionLedger.com (Mississippi) – Big push for immigration bill

Reporting on February 29, 2012 about Alabama-style immigration bill moving through the Mississippi legislature:

Supporters of the Alabama-style proposed immigration legislation argued at a Capitol news conference Wednesday that illegal immigrants are taking jobs from Mississippians, bloating the state’s 10.4 percent unemployment rate.

“There are an estimated 90,000 illegal immigrants in our state, and over 133,000 Mississippi citizens have actively looked for a job in the past two months and are still unemployed,” said Rodney Hunt, president of the Mississippi Federation for Immigration Reform and Enforcement.

“We believe more jobs will open up for Mississippians as a result of House Bill 488.”

The bill has passed House Judiciary B Committee and must be passed by the Education Committee before Tuesday’s deadline to make it to the House floor for a vote.

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