Tuesday, June 15, 2010

Milwaukee Public School Directors to Vote on Boycott of Arizona Over Immigration Enforcement

On Thursday, June 17th at 6:30pm the Milwaukee Public School Board Committee on Legislation, Rules and Policies will be voting on a Resolution to participate in an economic boycott of Arizona due to their passage and enforcement of immigration laws. (Copy of the resolution is below).  If passed by this committee, it will move on to the full school board for a vote.  To speak out on this issue you may attend this meeting at 5225 West Vliet Street.  You may also share your views with the following Directors who sit on this committee:  Directors Blewett, Thompson, Bonds, Falk, Spence at (414) 475-8284.

This Item initiated by a Board member
At its meeting on May 27, 2010, the Milwaukee Board of School Directors referred
Resolution 1011R-003 by Director Miller to the Committee on Legislation, Rules and
WHEREAS, In April 2010, the Arizona legislature passed SB 1070, a bill making it a
state misdemeanor to be in the state of Arizona without legal documentation
and giving law enforcement broader abilities to enforce federal immigration
laws; and
WHEREAS, While bill SB 1070 mandates law enforcement to detain people who
are “reasonably suspicious”, the legal definition of “reasonably suspicious”
states that it must be based on specific and articulable facts and inferences;
WHEREAS, The only articulable facts and inferences that could lead law
enforcement to reasonably suspect that someone is undocumented are skin
color, physical features, or vocal accent; and
WHEREAS, Making the decision to detain someone purely on the basis of these
criteria is the very definition of racial profiling; and in no way indicates that
a person is in the country illegally and, similarly, it in no way proves that
someone of a different skin color without an accent is here legally; and
WHEREAS, The bill requires detained individuals to show documentation that
they are here legally, such as a driver’s license or immigration papers, which
violates the civil liberties of law-abiding citizens who are not required to
carry identification but could be detained and forced to prove their legal
status; and
WHEREAS, Many people already have a distrust of law enforcement, and this bill
will further strain the relationship between law enforcement and residents;
WHEREAS, The legality and enforceability of Arizona SB 1070 is questionable
since the Constitution of the United States grants authority over immigration
matters to the federal government, not to individual states; and
WHEREAS, Arizona SB 1070 discounts the efforts of immigrants who are following
immigration laws and struggling to navigate their way through the
bureaucratic process of becoming legal citizens; and
WHEREAS, Arizona SB 1070 is merely reactionary and does nothing to be
proactive in bringing about the nation-wide immigration reforms that the
United States needs; and
WHEREAS, In May of 2010, the Arizona legislature passed HB 2281, a bill
restricting and prohibiting the teaching of ethnic studies in Arizona public
schools; and
6 Milwaukee Board of School Directors
June 17, 2010
WHEREAS Arizona HB 2281 prohibits teaching classes designed primarily for
pupils of a particular ethnic group or to advocate ethnic awareness and
solidarity; and
WHEREAS, Ethnic-studies classes throughout the U.S. have historically taught
critical thinking, ethnic pride, and a fuller unbiased depiction of all people’s
journey in American history; and
WHEREAS, Omission of the experiences and contributions of many ethnic
minority groups has stood in the way of students’ understanding the full
spectrum of American history; now, therefore, be it
RESOLVED, That Milwaukee Public Schools participate in the economic boycott of
Arizona until SB 1070 and HB 2281 are overturned; and be it
FURTHER RESOLVED, That this boycott include, but not be limited to, products
and services coming from Arizona, travel to Arizona, entertainment venues,
and tourist attractions; and be it
FURTHER RESOLVED, That this boycott shall not apply to products and services
of businesses, organizations, and venues from Arizona that have taken a
position against these laws; and be it
FURTHER RESOLVED, That this resolution is to be effective immediately upon
adoption by the Milwaukee Board of School Directors.