PHOENIX. - After three years since the controversial state law "SB1070" took effect in Arizona, it continues to provoke arrests and deportations of undocumented immigrants and legalized racial profiling in Arizona, according to activists.
"Our families live in fear since the passage of SB1070. Those who go to work do not know whether they will return back home, and children are having problems also for fear that they may lose their parents at any time. I believe that that has been the legacy of this law: terror and panic, "said Maria Eugenia Carrasco to EFE, promoter of the Coalition for Human Rights based in Tucson Arizona.
Since this law came into effect on July 29, 2010, it became the first piece of legislation to criminalize the presence of undocumented immigrants and made the state of Arizona the epicenter of the immigration issue. However, one day before it would take effect, the federal judge Susan Bolton temporarily suspended some of the most controversial sections of the SB1070.
After a long legal battle between the federal government and the state of Arizona that reached the federal Supreme Court, the highest court eliminated several parts of SB1070, but maintained alive section 2 (b), which authorizes police departments throughout the state to question the immigration status of people "suspected" of not having "papers".
"The police are stopping people every day, and there are people who call us and tell us that they are stopping them with any excuse and turn them
in to the Border Patrol," said the activist.
Carrasco said that due to this cooperation between law enforcement agencies, the immigrant community has lost all trust in the police.
In Phoenix, where immigrants have been the target of ongoing operations of the Maricopa County Sheriff Joe Arpaio, groups like PUENTE (Bridge) have dedicated their efforts in trying to avoid deportations and searched for the support of the community through public campaigns.
"The SB1070 has destroyed our community, and I think not only politicians from Arizona, who approved it like the governor, Jan Brewer, but also President Barack Obama are responsible for allowing cooperation between agencies to continue , which continues causing the separation of families, "said Carlos Garcia, a Puente representative who is preparing for a march on Monday against the law.