13 October 2011

South Carolina jumps on the illegal US immigration crackdown bandwagon

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The state of South Carolina has adopted tough new measures aimed at investigating illegal US immigration.

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South Carolina has introduced harsh new laws on illegal immigration.

Following the trend of other Southern states like Arizona and Alabama, South Carolina has legislated harsh new illegal US immigration laws to crack down on migrants that do not hold a valid US visa.

The law - set to take effect in January 2012 - allows random immigration status checks by police and harsh penalties for harbouring or employing known illegal aliens.  Employers will be expected to undertake routine checks using the government sanctioned E-verify software.

The move has been met with criticism from human and migrants' rights groups, who argue the law is unconstitutional and provides a mechanism for legal discrimination.

"By requiring local law enforcement officials to act as immigration agents, this law invites discrimination against anyone who looks or sounds 'foreign,' including American citizens and legal residents," said American Civil Liberties Union of South Carolina Executive Director Victoria Middleton.

The Obama Administration - which brought legal action against the states of Arizona and Alabama for introducing similar legislation - has not yet indicated its official response.

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