PHOENIX -- A federal district judge today blocked the "harboring" provision of Arizona's SB 1070 anti-immigrant law but refused to issue a new injunction on the law's most controversial remaining section.
However, the so-called show-me-your-papers provision will not go into effect for at least 10 days, because additional procedures must be followed before the existing injunction in the federal government's challenge to SB 1070 can be lifted.
"The district court was correct in blocking Arizona's harboring statute, which criminalized many everyday interactions with unauthorized immigrants. Unfortunately, the district court's ruling let the 'show me your papers' law stand, without addressing significant new evidence that it was passed with a discriminatory motive and will result in illegal detentions," said Cecillia Wang, director of the ACLU Immigrants' Rights Project. "The ruling puts an enormous burden on the countless Arizona residents who will be victims of racial profiling and illegal detentions because of this law. We remain committed to fighting what is left of SB 1070 and defending the rights of all Arizonans to be free from this unjust law."
The ACLU is part of a coalition of civil rights groups that are challenging SB 1070 in the courts. The groups, which include the National Immigration Law Center and MALDEF, argued that Arizona lacks authority to enact the state harboring prohibition. They also argued that SB 1070 will cause people to be detained while their immigration status is checked even though the Supreme Court recently made clear that such detention is unconstitutional; and that it violates the Equal Protection Clause of the 14th Amendment because discrimination against Latinos, who make up one-third of Arizona's population, was a motivation behind the law's passage.