Civil Rights Groups Team Up to Challenge Alabama Immigration Law

Jul 12, 2011 - LegalZoom News Sources
A lawsuit seeks to block Alabama's strict immigration law.

Civil rights groups, including the American Civil Liberties Union and the Southern Poverty Law Center, recently filed a suit alleging an immigration law passed in June by the state of Alabama is unconstitutional.

Alabama's law empowers law enforcment officers to question any person who they suspect might be an illegal immigrant and detain anyone who cannot prove his or her citizenship. Additionally, the Alabama law requires students and parents to furnish affidavits to public schools, which are called upon to publish undocumented immigrant enrollment numbers and costs associated with educating these children. The law also prohibits driving illegal immigrants.

The law is being challenged on a number of grounds, including that it violates the Constitution's due process guarantees and will encourage racial profiling.

As the civil complaint against the immigration law notes, less draconian measures in other states, including Arizona, Utah, Indiana and Georgia, have already been suspended by federal courts. In May, Arizona Governor Jan Brewer asked the United States Supreme Court to lift the lower court injunction against her state's law.