A women’s call to action: stop racial profiling in Arizona

On Wednesday, at We Belong Together’s media briefing on the Supreme Court’s SB1070 ruling, immigrant women shared their personal experiences living under Arizona’s anti-immigrant law and its copycats in Alabama and Georgia. While expressing relief that part of the law was blocked, they shared their dismay at the Court’s decision to uphold SB1070’s Section 2B—requiring law enforcement to question people they have stopped about their immigration status.

If you missed the call, you can listen to a recording of it here.

Our speakers illustrated that it will be impossible for the law to be implemented without the use of racial profiling, and that profiling has a deep impact on women and children—from Arizona to the states that have followed its example. Amparo, who lives in Arizona, said that, “children in our communities are living in fear.” Alicia in Georgia described navigating checkpoints between schools and hospitals, and asked, “why do I look around and see so many mothers detained? How does detaining mothers make our communities safer?” Describing targeting of Latino drivers, Ana Maria in Alabama said, “this is a wave of attacks against all people of color. Under these laws, no one is free, and it doesn’t matter if you have papers or not.”

The Court’s decision leaves Section 2B open for future challenges, and our speakers indicated that it’s just a matter of time before the evidence proves that the law does, in fact, lead to racial discrimination. In the meantime, communities in Arizona are issuing a call to action.

Will you sign the petition asking President Obama not to deport those who are detained as a result of racial profiling in Arizona?

Thank you for standing with Amparo, Alicia, Ana Maria and all of the courageous women who are at the forefront of this struggle for dignity, justice, and equal protection.

—Ai-jen and Miriam

Ai-jen Poo, National Domestic Workers Alliance
Miriam Yeung, National Asian Pacific American Women’s Forum