Sep 26, 2012 12:26 AM by Rebecca Taylor
TUCSON - City leaders and civil rights groups met at church Tuesday night, a public forum on SB-1070.
Last week, the so called 'show me your papers' provision took effect, requiring police, to check immigration status if they think someone they've stopped for another reason is in the country illegally.
The setting allowed concerned citizens to ask questions, including their rights under the law.
Dozens filled the pews of Holy Trinity Church on Tucson's West side.
Some came to listen, others came to express concerns.
Tucson resident Alejandro Moreno says, "the reason I came here is because I see everything that's been going on. And I see some of the profiling, I've gone through some of it myself."
Maria Carraseo with Derechos Humanos says, "my granddaughter, her skin is really dark and she's the second generation born in Arizona. And I don't want her to be worried she's going to be targeted later in life when she's driving."
The panel, consisting of council woman Regina Romero, Tucson Police Chief Roberto Villaseñor, and American Civil Liberties Union spokesperson Victoria Lopez addressed those concerns.
Lopez says, "there are definitely concrete recommendations that we're going to present to the Tucson Police for changing their current general operating orders when encountering undocumented people during the course of their regular business."
Lopez hopes the dialogue increases documentation if racial profiling occurs, including incidents of prolonged detention and unlawful arrests.
Chief Villaseñor says he's listening and open to feedback.
As the implementation of section of 2B is worked out.
"In reality we're mandated by the law to make checks in certain situations," says Villaseñor, "if you have proof of citizenship, which are presumptive IDs such as drivers license, and ID card, some type of government issued id card, it's a good idea to carry that with you at all times. It's not a mandate but it sure clears up questions and we're going to be working through these issues as we come across them."
The US Department of Justice has set up a hotline and email for folks to report racial profiling.
1-855-353-1010 and the email is Sb1070@usjoj.gov