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[28 Mar 2014 | No Comment | ]
Infamous “Bilbo” Statue in Room 113

The Legislative hearing on in-state tuition was held in Room 113, on the first floor of the Capitol building. There’s something unique about that room, and it isn’t a good thing—it’s a large bronze statue of infamous Mississippi Governor and U.S. Senator Theodore Bilbo (governor from 1916-1920, and 1928-32, and as US Senator 1935-1947 until he died), who was ultra-racist and a proud Klansman.
The statue had previously been housed in the 2nd floor rotunda of the capitol building, but Mississippi Governor William Winter fought for and finally had it removed …

action items, events, legislative »

[3 Feb 2014 | No Comment | ]
2014 Mississippi Legislative Session: Proposals Attacking Immigrants & Proposals Helping Immigrants

A report from the Mississippi Immigrants Rights Alliance (MIRA)
Once again there are two anti-immigrant proposals— one introduced in the Mississippi House of Representatives and one introduced into the Mississippi Senate as the session began on January 7th.  HB 1322 by Rep Andy Gipson (R) of Braxton and SB 2655 by Sen. Michael Watson (R) of Pascagoula. These bills are another attempt by Tea Party Republicans to make life miserable for immigrants so they will leave the state.
The first bill mandates E-Verify to be enforced with all employers with the goal of …

Headline, legislative, MS Bills »

[17 Jan 2014 | No Comment | ]
Major Effort Underway in 2014 Legislative Session

The session began on January 7, but it’s still in the early stages, so there are many bills that have not yet been filed. Monday, January 20th is the deadline for bills to be filed, so we should have a better idea of exactly what we’re up against by the middle of next week. While we’ll likely be facing opposition from anti-immigrant camps, we believe that we can gain some serious ground for immigrants and workers in areas like healthcare, education, and worker’s compensation.
So far, we have seen: 
- HB 209 …

legislative, MS Bills »

[31 Dec 2013 | No Comment | ]
Critical Preparations for 2014 Legislative Session Underway

Mississippi’s 2014 Legislative Session begins on January 7th, and we’re preparing for action on a number of key issues. Our annual Civic Engagement day at the Capitol is Wednesday, January 22nd, and we are forming strategies to address the legislative issues at hand. While we’ll likely be facing opposition from anti-immigrant camps, 2014 appears to be a year in which we can gain some serious ground for immigrants and workers in areas like healthcare, education, and worker’s comp.
Since the 2014 Legislative Session has not yet begun, it’s unclear just how …

action items, Immigration News, legislative »

[26 Jun 2013 | No Comment | ]
What Will Happen Should Senate Bill S. 744 Become Law?

The Dignity Campaign’s Response To The Immigration Reform Bill
As organizations participating in the Dignity Campaign for Immigration Reform Based on Human and Labor Rights, we are very concerned about the harsh impact the Senate’s immigration reform bill will have on immigrants.  Rather than ‘bring immigrants out of the shadows’ this bill will hold millions in an underclass, vulnerable to exploitation and relegated to the ranks of the working poor, with no access to basic services.  Millions will have no hope of receiving permanent legal status, let alone citizenship.
We believe this bill …

action items, Immigration News, legislative »

[21 Jun 2013 | No Comment | ]
Supreme Court Strikes Down AZ Proof of Citizenship as Pre-Condition to Register to Vote

Analysis by Mike Sayer of Southern Echo
June 20, 2013
On June 17th, the US Supreme Court in a 7-2 decision (Thomas and Alito dissenting) held that the State of Arizona is pre-empted by the 1993 National Voter Registration Act from requiring persons to prove they are citizens as a precondition to registering to vote in federal elections.
This was a great victory for voting rights because it struck down the law in Arizona, and implicitly also struck down copycat laws in Georgia, Alabama and Kansas, each of which states had participated in …

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[16 Feb 2013 | No Comment | ]
Analysis OF HB 1275

By Mike Sayer
Courtesy of Southern Echo http://southernecho.org/s/
 February 16, 2013
Once you read the existing law, MS Code 29-1-75, you will see the insidious purpose of HB 1275, which would amend the existing law.  Here is the entire textof the existing law:
Miss. Code Ann. § 29-1-75
§ 29-1-75. Who may purchase
Except as otherwise provided in this section, neither a corporation nor a nonresident alien, nor any association of persons composed in whole or in part of nonresident aliens, shall directly or indirectly purchase or become the owner of any of the public lands; and every patent issued in contravention hereof shall …

action items, Immigration News, legislative »

[29 Jan 2013 | No Comment | ]
MIRA Joins The Dignity Campaign

by Bill Chandler, Executive Director
January 28, 2013
Jackson, Mississippi – Today the Dignity Campaign, a national network of immigrant rights organizations, churches, unions and community groups, is calling on President Obama to adopt principles for immigration reform that prioritize human and labor rights.
President Obama will announce tomorrow in Nevada his principles for immigration reform.  The Dignity Campaign urges the administration and Congress to end the injustices in current immigration law.  But based on the experiences of past proposals in Congress, Dignity Campaign organizations call for a much more progressive vision of …

Headline, legislative, MS Bills »

[28 Jan 2013 | No Comment | ]
Bills Introduced So Far…

Bad, Anti-Immigrant:

HB 67 by Rep. Becky Currie (R) Brookhaven- punitive E-Verify bill revises “Mississippi  Employment Protection Act”  of 2008 increases penalties and requires Attorney General & Secretary of State to enforce. (Jud. B) 
HB 198 by Rep. Becky Currie (R)- Expands human trafficking law to employers. (Jud. B) 
HB 321 by Rep. Becky Currie (R)- mandates that law enforcement officers to take photographs of certain persons with out valid drivers licenses. (Jud. B) 
HB 490 by Rep. Gary Chism (R) Columbus- attempt to prevent Federal pre-emption of  state  Laws and to “assert the sovereignty of …

legislative, MS Bills »

[22 Jan 2013 | One Comment | ]
2013 MS Legislative Proposals Include Harsh E-Verify Bill, Among Others

It’s still early to know what legislation might be introduced this year. Lawmakers have several days yet to file their proposed legislation – the deadline for filing is Monday, January 21st. We do know, however, that at least three bills related to immigration have been introduced, and several others are being drafted.
One anti-immigrant bill that has been introduced and assigned its number is HB-67, a punitive E-verify bill. Click here to see the full text of the bill (http://billstatus.ls.state.ms.us/documents/2013/pdf/HB/0001-0099/HB0067IN.pdf). This piece, authored by the ever-vigilant anti-immigrant legislator Becky Currie, expands …