Sunday, December 03, 2006

Judge Rules Cities Cannot Bar Illegals from Seeking Work

A federal judge ruled that the Village of Mamaroneck, New York discriminated against illegal immigrants when it closed a day labor hiring site and stepped up police patrols on the streets.

Six undocumented immigrant workers sought an injunction against what they called harassment and ethnic discrimination. They said the village violated their right to equal protection. The defendants have engaged in a campaign against undocumented immigrants who gather on the streets of Mamaroneck to seek work, Judge Colleen McMahon wrote in her ruling.

Immigration is a federal responsibility. Cities may not interfere with it even if the federal government is not fulfilling that responsibility. This may seem like a loophole in the law, but it is a protected loophole.

The ruling comes as a handful of small cities in the United States have instituted tougher laws, some naming English their official language and threatening fines to landlords who knowingly rent to undocumented immigrants. They say they are stepping in where the federal government has failed to regulate immigration.

Testifying in Spanish, each of the six laborers -- some in the country illegally -- asserted that the city was denying them their human right to work. A man from Guatemala told the judge "They are treating us like second class citizens just because we come from another country. They act like they own the place."

The victory is the second this year for undocumented immigrants in federal court. In May, a federal judge prohibited the city of Redondo Beach, California, from arresting undocumented immigrants for violating a local ordinance against soliciting work on public streets.

Editor's note: This is the kind of judicial activism that has destroyed our country. care to give the Hon.Judge Colleen McMahon a piece of your mind? Call her at (914) 390-4146 or write her at Hon. Colleen McMahon, United States District Judge, United States Courthouse, 300 Quarropas Street, Room 533, White Plains, New York 10601-4150

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