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“Show Your Papers”: More Legal Challenges to Come for S.B. 1070?

June 26, 2012

BALTIMORE - One decision is on the books, and there's talk already about future challenges concerning Arizona's immigration law. The U.S. Supreme Court struck down most of the law, but upheld the section that allows local authorities to check immigration status if they suspect a person is in the country illegally.

Maryland officials at the county and state level have given some thought to the idea of laws similar to Arizona's. Amy Gottlieb, director of the American Friends Service Committee Immigrant Rights Program, claims the court ruling implicitly endorses racial profiling, something her group is against.

"There's very clear concern across the board about racial profiling. People will be asked their status because of the color of their skin and/or their accent."

AFSC had signed an amicus brief stating that Arizona's law violated the U.S. Constitution.

Gottlieb says she expects several states to work on similar legislation, and she also expects more legal challenges.

"There's much conversation now about whether civil-rights challenges will be brought, and I think that civil-rights challenges will have to be brought."

She adds that the American Friends Service Committee is also focusing on education around immigrant issues, promoting respect of civil rights and human rights, and urging Congress to take up comprehensive immigration reform.

Deb Courson Smith, Public News Service - MD