AJC Calls Arizona Law Setback for Immigration Reform

April 26, 2010 – New York - AJC has condemned Arizona’s new immigration law, calling it "a setback in national efforts to achieve immigration reform."

The Arizona law, expected to go into effect this summer, will allow local law enforcement to stop anyone, if there is reason to suspect they are illegal immigrants, and arrest those unable to produce proper immigration documents.

“We regret Gov. Brewer’s decision to sign this misguided law,” said Richard Foltin, AJC’s Director of National and Legislative Affairs. “This law essentially allows police to question and arrest people on little more than suspicion. It will encourage racial profiling, fear of police and further distrust in a community already wary of law enforcement.”

AJC’s Arizona Regional Office had advocated against passage of the bill by the state legislature. AJC joined with other national and Arizona religious leaders in letters encouraging the Governor to veto the bill.

“Regrettably, this law impedes the progress made by Arizona law enforcement in reaching out to immigrant communities,” said Foltin. “It underscores the need for comprehensive immigration reform at the national level, to create an effective federal immigration system characterized by the rule of law and the humane treatment of immigrants.”

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