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Alabama’s Dangerous New Anti-Immigrant Law

Released on Thu, Sep 29, 2011

Washington D.C. - Yesterday, Judge Sharon Blackburn failed to enjoin major portions of Alabama’s extreme anti-immigrant law, HB 56, leaving many dangerous sections open to implementation. Local police, for example, are required to act as federal immigration enforcement agents by demanding proof of legal status from anyone who appears to be foreign. Other provisions—that go further than Arizona’s law—insist public school administrators check the legal status of students and their parents and create confusing and burdensome new restrictions on contracts between the state government and immigrants and between private citizens and immigrants. It’s unclear how far the restrictions on contracts will go, but at a minimum they will limit access to housing and utilities for anyone who cannot produce the proper documentation.

Although supporters claim the law will solve the state’s economic problems and reduce crime, HB 56 will inflict greater economic damage to Alabama, costing the state millions to implement and defend. And the crime argument simply doesn't hold water. Since 1990, Alabama’s unauthorized population has risen from five thousand to 120 thousand.  Yet the violent crime rate in the state has fallen by more than a third. Restrictive immigration laws have proven to reduce, not maximize, law enforcement effectiveness.Read more...

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As Immigrants Move In, Americans Move Up

Published on Mon, Aug 24, 2009

A perceived weakness of the liberal argument on immigration is over-reliance on the concept of compassion. The perception is reinforced in part by reality, as liberals commonly call upon people to remember the importance of basic human solidarity and concern for others in the debate over immigration.

Published in the WireTap Magazine

Supreme Court Limits Arizona’s Overreach on Immigration, Leaves Door Open to Future Challenges

Released on Mon, Jun 25, 2012

Washington D.C. - In a blow to the state anti-immigration movement, the Supreme Court ruled today that the authority to enforce immigration laws rests squarely with the federal government, limiting the role that states may play in crafting state-level answers to immigration enforcement. By a 5-3 margin, the Court struck down three of the four provisions of SB 1070 that were challenged by the Obama administration as pre-empted under federal law. While the Court agreed that Arizona’s attempt to limit immigration by creating new laws and new penalties to punish undocumented immigrants was pre-empted, it found that a provision requiring local police to investigate the legal status of suspected undocumented immigrants was not pre-empted on its face. The court read this provision very narrowly, however, leaving open the door to future lawsuits based on racial profiling and other legal violations. Read more...

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Latino Economic Power

Published on Wed, Aug 05, 2009

A report released yesterday by the Immigration Policy Center states that Latinos, whether legal or illegal immigrants, act as an economic boom to the state. But an immigration critic says supporting immigrants outweighs any benefit. Read more about that below.

Published in the Denver Daily News

LAC Issues Practice Advisory on Reinstatement of Removal

Released on Tue, Apr 30, 2013

For Immediate Release


Washington, D.C.—The Legal Action Center (LAC) is pleased to announce the issuance of a new practice advisory, Reinstatement of Removal. A person who has been removed and illegally reenters the United States may be subject to reinstatement of removal under INA § 241(a)(5). This Practice Advisory provides an overview of the reinstatement statute and implementing regulations. It also addresses federal court review of reinstatement orders and potential arguments to challenge the legality of reinstatement orders, including challenges to the underlying removal order.

This practice advisory includes a sample reinstatement order, a sample letter to DHS requesting a copy of the reinstatement order, a checklist for potential challenges to reinstatement orders, and an appendix of published reinstatement decisions. The LAC issued this advisory jointly with the National Immigration Project of the National Lawyers Guild.

All of the LAC’s Practice Advisories are available on the LAC website.


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For more information, contact clearinghouse@immcouncil.org or call 202-507-7516.

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White House Plan on Immigration Includes Legal Status

Published on Fri, Nov 13, 2009

The Obama administration will insist on measures to give legal status to illegal immigrants as it pushes early next year for legislation to overhaul the immigration system, Homeland Security Secretary Janet Napolitano said Friday.

Published in the New York Times

LAC Issues New Practice Advisory on Motions to Suppress Evidence Unlawfully Obtained by CBP

Released on Wed, Nov 13, 2013

The American Immigration Council’s Legal Action Center (LAC) has just released a new practice advisory, Motions to Suppress in Removal Proceedings: Fighting Back Against Unlawful Conduct by U.S. Customs and Border Protection.

Since 9/11, Congressional appropriations for border security have skyrocketed.  This influx of resources to U.S. Customs and Border Protection (CBP) has corresponded with increased reports of pretextual arrests, racial profiling, excessive use of force, and coercive tactics to aid immigration enforcement along both borders.  Although these enforcement practices often violate the constitutional, statutory or regulatory framework governing the conduct of CBP officers, they are rarely challenged in immigration court. 

The LAC’s new practice advisory discusses some of the factual scenarios that may give rise to successful motions to suppress evidence obtained unlawfully by CBP officers, including CBP inspectors stationed at ports of entry and Border Patrol agents, who operate between ports of entry.  It also addresses some of the legal issues specific to motions to suppress evidence obtained at and near the border.  If successful, a motion to suppress can prevent the government from using unlawfully obtained evidence to prove alienage, which may result in the termination of removal proceedings. Read more...

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ICE strives to improve migrant-detainee care

Published on Tue, Jan 26, 2010

WASHINGTON - The head of U.S. immigration enforcement on Monday announced plans for an overhaul of the government's controversial detention system for people who face deportation.

The moves described by John T. Morton, assistant secretary of Homeland Security for U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement, address oversight, medical care and tracking of detainees at facilities in Arizona and across the country.

Published in the Arizona Republic

Immigration program needs better supervision, report says

Published on Mon, Apr 05, 2010

A federal immigration enforcement program used in Prince William and Loudoun counties needs better oversight, according to a report from the inspector general of the Department of Homeland Security.

The report includes 33 recommendations to strengthen management and controls of the 287(g) program, which deputizes local law enforcement agents to enforce certain federal immigration laws.

Published in the Washington Examiner