Posted July 3, 2011
ATLANTA – Tens of thousands of protesters gathered at the Georgia Capitol on July 2 and marched through downtown in opposition to the newly enacted Georgia House Bill 87.
The demonstration, organized by the Georgia Latino Alliance for Human Rights with the participation of over 60 other community-based immigration groups throughout the southeast, is part of a recent string of events put on by activists in an effort to push back against the increasing crackdown on undocumented immigrants.
Earlier in the week, 6 undocumented youth (including 3 high school students) were arrested after staging a sit-in in the middle of an busy intersection adjacent to the Georgia Capitol. On Friday, activists issued a call to action for inaction — in other words, a day of non-compliance in which immigrants refused to show up for work or spend money.
HB 87, which went into effect July 1, criminalizes those who apply for jobs using false identification and forces employers to check the immigration status of all employees.
Modeled after Arizona’s harsh immigration laws that were passed last year, HB 87 is just one of many pieces of legislation throughout the United States that seek to target undocumented immigrants and their families.
The bill previously contained provisions that would allow law enforcement officers to investigate the immigration status of people “suspected” of being undocumented and would punish anyone who transports or houses an undocumented immigrant while committing a crime. These sections of HB 87 were struck down earlier this week by a federal judge.