Lawyering up for SB 1070
Reporter: Jessica Chapin
TUCSON (KGUN9- TV) - A Supreme Court ruling on the controversial immigration law SB 1070 is expected very soon and people are preparing for the verdict. For some, that includes hiring an attorney.
Depending on the decision, it could increase illegal immigration enforcement across Arizona. When the bill passed in 2010, the state's population shifted slightly as some illegal immigrants packed up and left. This time, that's not the trend. Instead, some are getting affairs in order with some help.
Wednesday, 23 Spanish-speaking media outlets came together to produce a program instructing illegal immigrants on their rights if the verdict is in favor of the law. Organizations like Border Action Network and The Immigrant Advocacy Foundation are helping illegal immigrants with power of attorney.
"We are assuming the worst is going to happen, but we're hoping for the best," said Border Action Network policy director Mike Wilson.
His organization helped Maria Munoz ensure her three children stay safe even if she is detained. After Obama's announcement last week to allow children of illegal immigrants to legally stay and work in the U.S, it's now a priority for parents to pick a legal friend or relative to care for their child if they are deported or detained.
The Immigrant Advocacy Foundation spokesperson Carlos Galindo told 9 On Your Side they've helped more than 100 families with power of attorney while waiting for a verdict. They also released a public service announcement detailing what illegal immigrants should know about the law.
“We can no longer flee those communities where we have grown roots and where our children play and learn,” he said in a recent statement.
As illegal immigrants get ready for the verdict, so are police officers. Governor Jan Brewer signed an executive order for police to re-distribute a training video produced when the bill passed in 2010.
Tucson Police say they have the video, and they are also prepared for any protests or demonstrations that could arise on the day of the verdict. Chief Roberto Villasenor met with Border Action Network and others to discuss peaceful assembly. TPD says they are prepared to ensure safe demonstrations if necessary.