Saturday, July 20, 2024

What You Need to Know About the Texas SB4 Immigration Enforcement Law

Texas passed a law known to many as a ban on “sanctuary” cities, but the law does far more than just that. While supporters of the law say it is designed to boost public safety by enforcing laws already in place, critics say the law puts immigrants and U.S. citizens in the cross hairs of law enforcement.

“This bill will help keep dangerous criminals off our streets and protect innocent lives. For every ounce of criticism, there is a pound of praise from Texans who simply want laws to keep them safe,” stated a spokesperson for Texas Governor Greg Abbott.

While the law is set to go into effect in September, it follows a similar law that was passed in Arizona. The Supreme Court struck down the Arizona law and removed the “show me your papers” provision, which required officers to investigate a person’s immigration status.

“It’s an open checkbook and there are going to be lots of suits,” said Thomas Saenz, president and general counsel for the Mexican American Legal Defense and Education Fund (MALDEF). “Why a fiscally conservative governor and legislature would write a check like that is the untold story.”

The law enlists all city council members, members of country commissions, sheriffs, attorneys and even campus police to enforce the immigration law, and even goes as far as permitting officials to ask victims and witnesses about their immigration status.

NBC Latino