STATEMENT: Court of Appeals partly suspends the injunction blocking implementation of SB4
For Immediate Release
Monday, September 25, 2017
Contact: Zenén Jaimes Pérez
New Orleans, LA — A panel of three federal judges with the United States Court of Appeals for the Fifth Circuit partially stayed Judge Orlando Garcia’s preliminary injunction against the anti-immigrant, “show me your papers” law SB4 today, allowing certain provisions SB4 to go into effect.
The panel’s decision means that:
- The endorsement prohibition of SB 4 is still blocked, so public officials are still free to express their views regarding immigration enforcement by law enforcement officers, consistent with the First Amendment.
- The prohibition against local agencies and campus police adopting or enforcing policies that “materially limit” the enforcement of immigration law is still blocked pending the conclusion of the appeal.
- The prohibition against patterns or practices by local agencies and campus police that “materially limit” the enforcement of immigration law is still blocked pending the conclusion of the appeal.
- SB4’s provisions mandating cities and counties “honor and fulfill” immigration detainer requests from the federal government has gone into effect pending the conclusion of the appeal. Importantly, the panel noted that SB4 “does not require detention pursuant to every ICE detainer request; rather, the ‘comply with, honor, and fulfill’ provision mandates that local agencies cooperate according to existing ICE detainer practice and law.”
While we welcome the decision to leave parts of the injunction in place, the remainder of this decision puts millions of people in Texas at risk for profiling and discrimination, and could lead to unnecessary and harmful turmoil to cities and counties.
The Texas Civil Rights Project represents the Texas Organizing Project Education Fund and MOVE San Antonio in the consolidated action against SB 4 in New Orleans. TCRP partners with co-counsel Garza, Golando, & Moran, LLC, which represents El Paso County and several El Paso elected officials.
Efrén C. Olivares, Racial & Economic Justice Program Director with the Texas Civil Rights Project, said:
“We are disappointed and disagree with the panel’s decision to allow additional provisions of SB4 to go into effect. This decision endangers Texas immigrants and families. As we prepare for the next hearing on the merits of the appeal of the injunction in November, TCRP will work with community allies, including our clients the Texas Organizing Project Education Fund and MOVE San Antonio, as well as with cities, counties and college campuses across the state to ensure the civil rights of Texans are not violated with the implementation of SB4.”
The Texas Civil Rights Project uses legal advocacy to empower Texas communities and create policy change. In its twenty-five year history, TCRP has brought thousands of strategic lawsuits, defending voting rights, fighting institutional discrimination, and reforming systems of criminal justice. Today — with dozens of high-caliber attorneys and professionals in Austin, Dallas, El Paso, Houston and the Rio Grande Valley, and an extensive network of pro bono counsel and community allies — TCRP is among the most influential civil rights organizations in the Lone Star State.