The type of constraints placed on the immigration enforcement efforts of Arizona Sheriff Joe Arpaio’s office will soon be implemented nationwide if the immigration-reform bill currently under consideration by Congress is passed.
On Wednesday it was reported U.S. District Court Judge Murray Snow issued a ruling that requires the Maricopa County Sheriff’s Office to collect data on law enforcement actions to ensure against the discrimination of Latinos and other minorities when asking for a suspect’s immigrant status.
Snow imposed further measures to stop so-called discrimination, including cameras in every deputy’s car, oversight by a community advisory board and a court-appointed monitor.
The measures are not simply the designs of a district judge. The immigration bill being considered has many of the same requirements, including some that could shackle U.S. border agents in their attempts to halt illegal immigration.
Amid a government shutdown over partisan debates about Obamacare, some Republicans are reportedly working behind the scenes to negotiate the passage of immigration reform.
WND revealed that under the immigration-reform bill, Border Patrol agents or any other law-enforcement officer who stops a vehicle to demand identification of suspected illegal aliens might be found in violation of the law.
The legislation bars all federal law-enforcement officers, including border agents, from using race or ethnicity “to any degree” while making routine or spontaneous law-enforcement decisions, a WND review of the lengthy bill has found.
Similar to the measures imposed on Sheriff Joe’s office, the immigration bill further calls for the Homeland Security Department to collect data on immigration enforcement activities to determine the existence of racial profiling.
The data would be utilized to issue future guidelines to officers regarding the use of race or ethnicity during routine enforcement.
The bill states that “in making routine or spontaneous law enforcement decisions, such as ordinary traffic stops, Federal law enforcement officers may not use race or ethnicity to any degree, except that officers may rely on race and ethnicity if a specific suspect description exists.”
The bill defines federal law-enforcement officers as any “officer, agent, or employee of the United States authorized by law or by a Government agency to engage in or supervise the prevention, detection, investigation, or prosecution of any violation of Federal law.”
The definition includes U.S. Customs and Border Protection agents.
It is clear that immigration enforcement officials are singled out by the new directives.
The legislation refers specifically to border-security agents with another clause that states “in enforcing laws protecting the integrity of the Nation’s borders, Federal law enforcement officers may not consider race or ethnicity except to the extent permitted by the Constitution and laws of the United States.”
If the legislation is enacted, the bill calls for the DHS secretary to begin within 180 days the collection of data regarding the “individualized immigration enforcement activities of covered Department officers.”
The data is to be utilized immediately to possibly issue new guidelines.
The act states that within 180 days of the data collection, the DHS secretary “shall complete a study analyzing the data.”
Ninety days after the study is complete, the bill dictates the secretary, in consultation with the attorney general, “shall issue regulations regarding the use of race, ethnicity, and any other suspect classifications the Secretary deems appropriate by covered Department officers.”
The bill allows for some exceptions to the racial profiling restriction.
It states federal law-enforcement officers may consider race and ethnicity “only to the extent that there is trustworthy information, relevant to the locality or time frame that links persons of a particular race or ethnicity to an identified criminal incident, scheme, or organization.”
Border agents are not the only future targets of discrimination claims if the immigration legislation is passed.
WND reported the bill would make it illegal for employees to discriminate against the millions of newly documented illegal aliens who would be granted provisional status.
Case of such discrimination would be referred to the Justice Department’s Special Counsel for Immigration-Related Unfair Employment Practices.
The text of the bill makes it an “unfair immigration-related employment practice” for a “person, other entity, or employment agency, to discriminate against any individual because of such individual’s national origin or citizenship status.”
The anti-discrimination law applies to the following:
- The hiring of the individual for employment.
- The verification of the individual’s eligibility to work in the United States.
- The firing of the individual.
The bill makes an exception for cases in which a newly legalized alien is competing for the same job with a U.S. citizen or national or against another newly legalized alien provided the two competitors are “equally qualified.”
Another exception is a business that employs fewer than three employees or if discrimination is necessary to comply with federal, state or local law, or a federal government contract.