UPDATE: Arizona Immigration Law

On July 28th, U.S. District Court Judge Susan Bolton made a ruling on the Arizona Immigration controversy, blocking the most contentious aspects of the law. The United States Conference of Catholic Bishops has commended the judges’ ruling.

During an interfaith prayer service after the ruling, Bishop Eduardo Nevares stated, “We need to remember our Christian principles, the values of Jesus Christ.” Emphasizing that immigrants enrich the American society, Bishop Nevares said, “Our movement is about achieving human dignity for everyone on our shores. So let us not become the oppressors, but instead put on the fruits of the Holy Spirit.”

Below is a snippet from the Catholic News Service article on the issue:

Opponents of the Arizona Immigration Law

Opponents of the Arizona Immigration Law Protesting | Source: NY Daily News

Bolton blocked provisions in the law that would have: required law enforcement officers to verify the immigration status of anyone stopped; made it a crime for immigrants not to carry proof of their immigration status at all times; allowed police to make warrantless arrests over suspicion of someone being in the country illegally; and criminalized the act of looking for work without the proper paperwork or hiring someone who lacks a work permit.

Bolton’s injunction is preliminary, pending further judicial review of legal challenges, primarily that of the U.S. Department of Justice. A full course of legal challenges could take years.

Other provisions were allowed to take effect, including one permitting lawsuits against individuals, state agencies and political subdivisions for “adopting a policy of restricting enforcement of federal immigration laws to less than the full extent permitted by federal law.” (CNS)

As the debate continues, let us continue to pray that our elected officials can come together to fix an immigration system that is clearly broken and that they continue to be mindful of the rights and dignity of all individuals.

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