New Arizona Immigration Law, How does it affect San Diego?

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via FlickrThe governor of Arizona, Jan Brewer, signed a new law in Arizona on Friday regarding illegal immigration. This new law gives police the authority to detain people they suspect are in the U.S. illegally. This law, said to go into effect in summer, also requires local and state police to question people about their immigration status if they suspect they are in the country illegally.

Brewer backs up this law by stating that, “decades of inaction and misguided policy have created a dangerous and unacceptable situation.” Supporters of this law say it is needed to protect state residents of the 460,000 illegal immigrants currently residing in Arizona.

This right wing view on immigration has many people in an uproar. The political community is having a field day with this new law and quick to say this method of dealing with America’s immigration problem is racial profiling and has nothing to do with reasonable suspicion and lawful contact.

With California being a neighbor of Arizona and Mexico, what does this mean for San Diego? San Diego lies extremely close to the border and illegal immigration has been an issue for as long as we can remember. The San Diego Police Department is taking a different approach to the immigration problem.

On Tuesday, San Diego police officers were reminded that you can only inquire about someone’s immigration status if the person is arrested on suspicion of crime or if an officer suspects the person is involved in other criminal activity. Police officers are reiterating their long-standing policies that bar officers from randomly asking whether someone in the country is illegal.

Many people in the San Diego community are outraged with Arizona’s new law, but the San Diego Police Department wants it to be clear that San Diego Law’s are not the same as Arizona’s and no one will be stopped just to check immigration status.


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