It has just come to the attention of the media that on 8 March 2013, Black and North African railway workers were told they could not work at Paris’ Gare du Nord station during the visit of Israeli President Shimon Peres. The reason? They might be Muslim.
It is now the subject of an official complaint by the SUD-Rail transport union which says everything was done to ensure there were “no Muslim employees to welcome the Head of the State of Israel”.
Mr Peres and a delegation of other senior Israelis arrived on a morning train from Belgium, and were greeted by staff from SNCF, France’s national railway, and their baggage-handling subsidiary, ITIREMIA.
The previous day however, a site manager told all workers at the station about the ban on black staff, and those of North African descent, because they might be Muslim.
Secular France does not officially recognise anybody’s religion, but it was assumed by management that anyone from a “black or Arab” background might be Muslim – an assumption “based on the appearance of the workers”, according to a SUD-Rail statement.
SNCF has said they will conduct a full examination.
Nebraska governor, Dave Heineman, is holding to his promise that he will not allow young immigrants brought to this country illegally to obtain driver’s licenses despite the fact that the federal government have issued them work permits.
As of last week, the state had rejected license applications from eight immigrants who qualified under the federal program, said Bev Neth, director of the Nebraska Department of Motor Vehicles.
The license rejections have riled immigration lawyers, who called the state’s policy discriminatory.
“It seems pretty clear in our statutes that anyone who has a work permit issued by Homeland Security is eligible for a driver’s license,” said Omaha attorney Mark Curley. “For some reason, this group has been singled out.”
The Obama administration’s deferred action program focuses on immigrants under age 31 brought to the country illegally before age 16. To receive the two-year work permit, the applicants must have no criminal record and must be in school or have a high school diploma.
Nebraska is one of three states to declare it won’t grant driver’s licenses to immigrants who obtain deferred action approval. The others are Arizona and Michigan, said Tanya Broder, a staff lawyer with the California-based National Immigration Law Center.
State Sen. Charlie Janssen of Fremont, an advocate of strict immigration enforcement, commended Nebraska officials for not abdicating their responsibility.
He questioned how illegal immigrants can lay claim to a privilege they are not entitled to receive in the first place.
“What it essentially comes down to is the federal government pushing amnesty on the states,” Janssen said.
No, what it essentially comes down to is that there are millions of young people in this country who were brought here by their parents as small children and have known no other way of life except being an American. They are innocent collateral damage in the illegal immigration issue and should not be penalized for something that they had no control over. To deny them the basic decency that all Americans receive is inhumane.
These young people are, in every sense, American. They know no other way of life and, providing they meet the federal requirements, should be afforded the rights that every American takes for granted.
Meanwhile, Illinois recognizes the safety issues that surround illegal drivers in the state and are looking to soon implement the policy, allowing those approved by the federal government to obtain driver’s licenses. California has a similar law that will take effect January 1, 2013.
The comments on the NBC story, however, are truly hateful, ill-informed, and disgusting. It’s a shame that Americans can’t be compassionate to a 19 year old who was brought illegally to America when they were two and want to ship them back to a country they do not know and do not consider their home.
Georgia lawmakers have introduced a bill that removes foreign passports as an acceptable form of ID at government agencies.
Under the current bill – which is separate from the 2011 law – passports would have to be accompanied by federal immigration documentation that proves the person is in the U.S. legally.
“It’s very interesting that the reliability of foreign passports is being questioned by the Georgia Legislature when the Transportation and Security Administration has considered the passport to be a very secure form of ID,” ACLU attorney Azadeh Shahshahani told Fox News Latino.
There is no reason for the state of Georgia to question the reliability of a foreign passport. Many countries in the world have more security measures in place not only ion their passports but in actually obtaining their passports and verifying their identities.
In order to simply enter the country, a person needs to present a passport and, often a visa, to the Transportation and Security Administration (TSA). Before they leave their country of origin, they need to pass background checks to be allowed to travel to the United States. Yet, all these security measures are not good enough for the State of Georgia.
The bill has also been written so broadly that it will snag innocent people in its web.
The bill’s sponsor, Sen. Barry Loudermilk, a Republican from Cassville, said barring immigrants from things like marriage and water were unintended consequences of the bill, and an amendment was likely to fix that, according to AP.
Loudermilk apparently doesn’t care who gets caught in this legislation. He will simply fix it later with an amendment instead of proposing a sound law to begin with. To Loudermilk, it doesn’t matter if immigrants can’t get married and risk deportation or are denied access to basic human dignities, such as water and sewage. His disgust of immigrants is clear in his proposed legislation; pass it now and we’ll get around to fixing it sometime in the future.
An internal Transportation Security Administration (TSA) memorandum concluded that the agency can successfully audit its screening practices to guard against racial and religious profiling.
The Sikh Coalition has complained for many years that they are being profiled by the TSA and are subject to more secondary screenings than they should be. A TSA memorandum was released this week stating that such a study into profiling can be done. The Sikh Coalition continues to push for such an audit.