Several Florida immigrant rights groups do not consider Judge Susan Bolton’s Wednesday decision blocking certain provisions of Arizona’s controversial S.B. 1070 immigration law a victory.
“A split decision only serves to split our communities. There is no partial solution to denials of our humanity. There is no partial solution to hatred,” the National Day Laborer Organizing Network and Puente Movement said.
Florida Immigrant Coalition Executive Director Maria Rodriguez said,
Our folks are at the capital right now, where many are declaring this as a victory. We are moving forward with mobilizations [Thursday] and want to convey as much as possible that this does not solve the human rights crisis in Arizona. First, this is a temporary stop to the law. Second, several important pieces move forward that criminalize our community. Third, ICE access programs such as 287(g) and Secure Communities programs give local law enforcement license to conduct raids and sweeps.
It will be critical in this time to put the message out, to prevent a false sigh of relief. This is a critical decision, and no doubt is positive that the most draconian aspects of the measure are temporarily stopped. But our movement objectives here are far larger than a split decision. We demand full justice for our communities, not half injunctions.
In Florida the Palm Beach County Coalition for Immigrant Rights and FLIC will deliver a letter on Thursday to Attorney General Bill McCollum’s offices in Miami, Palm Beach, Fort Lauderdale, Tampa, Orlando and Tallahassee.
“McCollum: Florida is not Arizona! Our state benefits greatly from Latin American and Caribbean populations. Throughout history, immigrant families of all backgrounds, whether migrating by choice or by force, have made Florida their home and contributed to our prosperity,” Rodriguez is quoted as saying in the letter.
McCollum recently joined eight other states in support of S.B. 1070.
Cheryl Little, Florida Immigrant Advocacy Center executive director, said on Thursday, “Instead of spending resources on divisive local laws, Arizona and other states would do better to work with the Obama Administration and Congress to reform our broken immigration system. We need real solutions that will benefit all Americans in this nation of immigrants.”
William Sanchez and FIAC are representing The National Coalition of Latino Clergy and Christian Leaders in one of the first lawsuits filed against this Arizona state law. CONLAMIC is a nonprofit organization with a membership that includes 300 Arizona pastors and 30,000 affiliated churches nationwide.
Republican gubernatorial candidates Rick Scott and Bill McCollum, and U.S. Senate candidate Republican Marco Rubio have also all expressed support for the Arizona law.
State Sen. Paula Dockery, R-Lakeland, and state Rep. Kevin Ambler, R-Tampa, sent a letter on July 14 to Senate President Jeff Atwater and Speaker of the House Republican Larry Cretul, asking that they include in the recent special session a motion to introduce a state immigration bill similar to the Arizona law.
Other activities during today’s National Day of Action against S.B. 1070, include rallies in Phoenix and nationwide, and Florida baseball fans will send a letter to the owners of the Florida Marlins and the Tampa Bay Rays asking them to support the petition calling for Major League Baseball to move the 2011 All Star Game out of Phoenix, Ariz.