Settlement Ends Alabama Immigration Lawsuit

"The state of Alabama agreed Tuesday to settle the remaining challenges over its toughest-in-the-nation crackdown against illegal immigration, which has mostly been gutted by federal court decisions.  The state and the American Civil Liberties Union filed a proposed settlement that would end a federal lawsuit over the law passed by the Republican-controlled Legislature in 2011, and the state separately filed documents to end a similar suit filed by the Justice Department.  Federal courts later blocked main sections, including a one-of-a-kind provision that public schools must check students’ citizenship status.  Courts have blocked key parts of similar immigration laws in Arizona, Georgia and South Carolina and other states.  ACLU lawyer Cecillia Wang said the Alabama agreement also means a so-called “show me your papers” provision that allowed police to ask for citizenship documents cannot lead to detentions, as many immigrants had feared.  “Overall this is really a significant win for immigrant families in Alabama and anyone who cares about the rights of immigrants,” said Wang, director of the ACLU’s Immigrant Rights Project.  The agreement permanently blocks sections of the law that were temporarily stopped by courts.  The state also agreed to pay $350,000 in attorney fees and expenses for groups that sued to block the law." - Associated Press, Oct. 29, 2013.