A federal appeals court has blocked several key provisions of Alabama and Georgia’s anti-immigration laws. The 11th Circuit Court of Appeals found that section 28 of Alabama’s law requiring immigration verification of K-12 students was a violation of the Equal Protection Clause, and that HB56 in Georgia could not criminalize transporting or harboring immigrants.
The narrow rulings still allowed for the ‘show me your papers’ parts of the laws.
Mary Bauer, legal director of the Southern Poverty Law Center, stated “We are pleased that this ruling has sent a strong message to Alabama and other states that they cannot enact hate-filled laws to try to drive an entire class of people from their borders. We are thrilled that students returning to schools this week will return to safer and more welcoming environments. We will continue to challenge the provisions left in place because, as we have already seen in Alabama, these laws cannot be enforced without racial profiling.”
Marielena Hincapie, executive director of the National Immigration Law Center reacted to the decision saying “Today’s decisions should send a strong message that state attempts to criminalize immigrants and their loved ones will not be tolerated. Alabamian children can now start the new school year without fear that their citizenship will be questioned, and Georgians can continue to give neighbors and friends a ride without first asking for their “papers.” Although we are disappointed that the racial profiling provisions of Alabama and Georgia’s law have not been blocked, we will continue to fight them both within and outside the courtroom.”
ACLU Immigrant’s Rights Project senior staff attorney Omar Jadwat stated “The court today rejected many parts of Alabama and Georgia’s anti-immigrant laws, including attempts to criminalize everyday interactions with undocumented immigrants and Alabama’s callous attempt to deprive some children of their constitutional right to education. The court explicitly left the door open to further challenges against the “show me your papers” provision, which we will continue to fight in order to protect people’s constitutional rights.”