As comprehensive immigration reform remained stalled in Congress in 2011, the issue persisted as a top priority among state legislatures that pushed various bills targeting undocumented immigrants. Today, NCLR (National Council of La Raza) released The Wrong Approach: State Anti-Immigration Legislation in 2011, a report that offers a state-by-state breakdown of the status of anti-immigrant bills introduced over the past year. In fact, in 2011 many more states considered and advanced laws focused on expanding opportunity for immigrants and residents as a whole in a variety of areas, including access to higher education and labor rights. As 2012 legislative sessions kick off, scores of state legislators are working to advance common-sense approaches to immigration policy—those that bolster state economies and honor our nation’s values, according to Progressive States Network (PSN), a national organization that provides support to state legislators advancing positive, common-sense immigration measures.
This week’s misguided ruling by a federal judge in Alabama that upheld parts of the harshest anti-immigrant state law in the nation, HB 56, is a devastating setback to our nation’s deeply held values, Alabama’s economic prosperity, and the well-being of all Alabama residents. The Alabama decision does not represent existing and binding Supreme Court precedent, and it stands as an outlier in stark contrast to other recent federal rulings on similarly draconian anti-immigrant laws, including Arizona’s SB 1070, where the courts have ruled similar provisions unconstitutional — including those that require law enforcement officials to ask for immigration papers from anyone they suspect on sight of being undocumented. If allowed to stand, this decision would put countless Alabama families and children in danger, drive taxpayers out of the state, sink Alabama’s economy, and set a chilling example that other states would be foolhardy to follow.
State governments are finally taking action to address the catastrophic damage caused by the oil spill in the Gulf of Mexico. The Office of the Attorney General of Alabama has filed before a U.S. District Court a complaint against British Petroleum for what it described as the largest marine oil disaster in the history of the United States.
Who benefits from hyping criminal enforcement as the solution to the
As a Service and Employees International Union (SEIU)
highlights, one key player profiting off the nation's broken
immigration system is the private prison firm, Corrections Corporation
of America (CCA). CCA operates and profits significantly from private
prisons across the country, many of which house immigrants in detention,
a kind of legal limbo in which immigrants are imprisoned while their
cases are being considered, or who are in the process of being deported.
Alabama’s three month legislative session that adjourned on April 22 was
dominated by three issues -- passing a state budget, a controversial
bill to bring a referendum on whether to make electronic bingo legal and
legislation to bail out the state’s popular pre-paid college tuition