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Alabama’s Immigration Law Examined

With Jane Clayson in for Tom Ashbrook

Alabama’s got the toughest immigration law in the country. Now, they have to live with it. We’ll go there.

Students sit in the gym at Crossville Elmentary School in Crossville, Ala. Despite being in an almost all-white town, the school's enrollment is about 65 percent Hispanic. Hispanic students have started vanishing from Alabama public schools in the wake of a court ruling that upheld the state's tough new law cracking down on illegal immigration. (AP)

Students sit in the gym at Crossville Elmentary School in Crossville, Ala. Despite being in an almost all-white town, the school's enrollment is about 65 percent Hispanic. Hispanic students have started vanishing from Alabama public schools in the wake of a court ruling that upheld the state's tough new law cracking down on illegal immigration. (AP)

Alabama’s strictest-in-the-nation immigration law has been upheld by a Federal judge. The U.S. Justice Department is still fighting, but for now, it’s the law of the land in Alabama –- and it’s having a big impact.

Many immigrants, legal and illegal, are simply leaving the state. Kids aren’t coming to school. And crops are being left to rot as pickers don’t show up to work. Critics call it the law a throwback to Alabama’s Jim Crow past. Supporters say it’s fair, it’s overdue, and it’s got to be done.

This hour, On Point: Alabama’s immigration law and its fallout.

Jane Clayson

Guests

Michael Innis-Jimenez, Assistant Professor of American Studies, University of Alambama.

Joey Kennedy, blogger and Pulitzer-winning columnist for the Birmingham News.

Cameron Smith, General counsel for the Alabama Policy Institute.

Kathy Smith, Alabama farmer who is having difficulty finding workers to harvest her 90 acres of vegetables.

From The Reading List

Press Register “Many of the leaders from agencies across southwest Alabama walked away from a Thursday afternoon meeting with the state Department of Homeland Security shaking their heads.”

Al.com “The fill-in workers were brought to the farm near Steele by Grow Alabama, a Birmingham-based network that works with farmers from around the state to market locally-grown produce. Just a few days after launching the temporary assistance program, it’s been overwhelmed, Grow Alabama head Jerry Spencer said Thursday.”

Politico “Many Hispanic students and workers have stayed home in response to Alabama’s tough new immigration law — and that’s the whole point of the measure, Rep. Mo Brooks said on Thursday.”

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