The City of Baltimore has joined a friend-of-the-court brief urging a federal court in Arizona to block enforcement of that state's new immigration law, Mayor Stephanie Rawlings-Blake's office announced.
Baltimore has joined Los Angeles, San Francisco, Minneapolis, Seattle and other cities in the brief, which argues that Arizona Senate Bill 1070 is "unconstitutional, impractical, costly, and deeply damaging to the relationships of trust law enforcement agencies have built with immigrant communities," according to a release from Rawlings-Blake.
"Cities like Baltimore were built by generations of immigrants who thirsted for the freedom to build a prosperous life for themselves and their families," Rawlings-Blake said in a statement. "We cannot let fear tear down this country's tradition of inclusion, liberty and justice."
The brief was filed Wednesday in a federal lawsuit filed by activists seeking to halt enforcement of the law before the law goes into effect at the end of July.
Councilwoman Sharon Green Middleton introduced a City Council resolution last month criticizing the Arizona law.
Del. Pat McDonough of Harford County, who says he will introduce a bill modeled on the Arizona law in Annapolis next year, called Middleton's resolution "useless and clueless."
The city's participation in the brief drew praise from the Baltimore Hispanic Commission.
"By signing on to the brief, Mayor Rawlings-Blake is not only standing up for immigrants in Arizona, Baltimore, and across the country, she is defending the basic civil rights of all Americans," commission Chairman Nicolas Ramos Sr. said.
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