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Immigrant Integration and Naturalization

TN: Tennesseans Favor Arizona-Style Immigration Law, Poll Suggests

Tennesseans favor bringing Arizona’s controversial immigration measure to the state by a 4-to-1 margin, a poll conducted by The Tennessean and other media outlets found.

Seventy-two percent of voters in the state say they would support enacting a law that would require people stopped by police to prove they are in the country legally. Such legislation would be modeled after an Arizona immigration statute scheduled to go into effect Thursday that lets police charge people who cannot prove their citizenship status under the state’s criminal trespassing laws.

PSN on GRITtv: Beyond SB 1070: Immigration Bills and the States


Suman Raghunathan, PSN's Immigration Policy Specialist, joined State Rep. Kyrsten Sinema (AZ) and Laura Flanders of GRITtv to discuss how progressive state legislators across the nation are fighting back against draconian right-wing anti-immigrant legislation, and advancing common-sense immigration solutions on both the state and federal level.

WaPo: Advocates for immigrants turn to state legislatures to block Arizona-style law

Advocates demanding stricter rules against illegal immigration -- including those backing Arizona's new law clamping down on undocumented immigrants -- have long argued that state lawmakers have been forced to act because of Congress's reluctance to take the lead.

But with little sign that Congress will act on comprehensive immigration reform this year, advocates for immigrants are also taking matters into their own hands. Like their political opponents, they have turned to their state legislatures to fight back.

In states from Pennsylvania to Utah, a battle of bills has been taking place between those who want to reproduce the Arizona law, which hands police more power to detain anyone they suspect of being in the country illegally, and those who want to extend further rights to immigrants.

States and the Census: Expanding Outreach, Maximizing Federal Funding and Assuring Equal Representation

This Dispatch will outline strategies that include crafting outreach and education initiatives that integrate city and state government agencies with grassroots organizations and local media to ensure 'Hard-to-Count' residents are included in the Census; enacting state legislation that mandates prisoners are counted in their home districts rather than in that of their prisons, and proactively considering principles for redistricting legislative districts that move beyond uniquely partisan concerns to addressing the needs of district residents.  This Dispatch will also aim to provide some of these best practices and highlight resources, all with a view toward preparing states to engage effectively with the 2010 and — looking forward — 2020 Census.

Arizona Defeats All Anti-Immigrant Bills

In the 11th hour, in what was the last step before HB 2280 would have been transmitted to the Governor for her approval, Republicans and Democrats alike in the House of Representatives voted the bill down, after it had previously been approved in the State Senate.

Dreaming of a Better Tomorrow: In-State Tuition at the Forefront

States across the country are proposing in-state college tuition rates for undocumented students, a move mirrored by Congress' proposed DREAM Act, which was re-introduced at the federal level on March 25th. Currently ten states allow undocumented immigrants to enroll in state colleges and universities under the cheaper in-state tuition rate category: California, Illinois, Kansas, Nebraska, New Mexico, New York, Oklahoma, Texas, Utah, and Washington. In recent years, anti-immigrant legislators sought to modify or repeal laws providing access to in-state tuition for undocumented immigrants, though they've failed each time. This session, those efforts failed again in Utah and Nebraska. Kansas didn't even bring up repealing it.

RELEASE: Policy recommendations from Corzine panel would put NJ at forefront of immigration reform

JERSEY CITY, NJ — At a press conference this morning, Gov. Jon Corzine unveiled the results of his Blue Ribbon Panel on Immigration Policy, which included recommendations for the establishment of an Office on New Americans to help integrate immigrant families into the state’s culture and work force.  Policy experts at the Progressive States Network (PSN) were quick to praise the panel’s recommendations, which they placed within an emerging trend among state lawmakers to include working immigrant families into plans for shared economic growth.

According to PSN Interim Executive Director Nathan Newman, who authored a comprehensive 50-state analysis of state immigration policy last September, “The story that states are rushing out to punish undocumented immigrants is really a smoke screen. When you look at the facts, you see that more and more states are finding ways to integrate immigrants into a growing workforce and thriving small business community.  States like New Jersey realize that there is a far better economic future in working together than there is in dividing the population against itself.”

Foundation aims to help L.A. immigrants

The California Community Foundation plans a campaign to help L.A. immigrants become more active citizens by helping them learn English, improve job skills and increase civic participation.