U.S. Commission on Civil Rights Announces Field Briefing on Civil Rights Effects of State Immigration Laws

Jun 25, 2012, 14:26 ET from U.S. Commission on Civil Rights

WASHINGTON, June 25, 2012 /PRNewswire-USNewswire/ -- The United States Commission on Civil Rights will hold a public field briefing on Friday, August 17, 2012 at 9:00 a.m. CT to hear testimony on the effects of recently enacted state immigration laws on the civil rights of individuals, an issue of great currency as a result of today's decision of the U.S. Supreme Court in Arizona v. U.S. affirming one Arizona state law provision, striking down the other three challenged provisions, and remanding. 

The Commission will hear testimony concerning whether state immigration laws of the type enacted in Arizona, Alabama, South Carolina and Georgia foster racial discrimination such as racial/ethnic profiling, hate crimes, bullying directed at persons based on their actual or perceived race, national origin or immigration status, diminished student educational rights under Plyler v. Doe, and whether the laws compromise public safety and community policing.  The Commission will also hear from proponents of the laws as to their rationale and intended effects.

Commission Chairman Martin R. Castro stated, "I'm pleased that my fellow Commissioners, in a unanimous and bipartisan fashion, voted to conduct this important inquiry on issues not addressed by the U.S. Supreme Court in its present decision.  It is also significant that for the first time in many years the Commission is leaving Washington, D.C. to conduct a briefing and hear directly from persons in the community."

The location of the Birmingham briefing will be announced in the near future.

Deaf or hearing-impaired persons who will attend the meeting and require the services of a sign language interpreter should contact Pam Dunston at (202) 376-8105 at least seven business days prior to the briefing.

The U.S. Commission on Civil Rights is an independent, bipartisan agency charged with monitoring federal civil rights enforcement.  Members include Chairman Martin R. Castro and Commissioners Roberta Achtenberg, Todd Gaziano, Gail Heriot, Peter Kirsanow, David Kladney, Abigail Thernstrom, and Michael Yaki.  Commission meetings and briefings are open to the general public.  The Commission's website is http://www.usccr.gov.

Lenore Ostrowsky
Acting Chief, Public Affairs Unit

SOURCE U.S. Commission on Civil Rights