Immigrant Housing Ban Ruled Unconstitutional in Dallas suburb

Illegal immigrants living in a Dallas suburb received positive news recently, as a federal court ruled the suburb’s former ban on providing housing to illegal immigrants unconstitutional, according to The Associated Press.

The suburb, Farmers Branch, originally instituted the law in 2008. The law required the city’s building inspector to check the immigration forms and status of all residents who wanted to rent a home or apartment in Farmers Branch. However, both the lower court and the 5th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals said the city’s law overstepped federal regulations in its institution of the law.

“Because the sole purpose and effect of this ordinance is to target the presence of illegal aliens within the City of Farmers Branch and to cause their removal, it contravenes the federal government’s exclusive authority over the regulation of immigration and the conditions of residence in this country,” court documents stated.

Despite two rulings in favor of disbanding the Farmers Branch law, many believe that the case will continue to be fought at the federal level. Bill Glancy, the city’s mayor, still supports the 2008 law, but has stated that he will talk to Farmers Branch city council before it decides whether to bring the matter to full appeals or the U.S. Supreme Court, according to the AP.

Alabama’s immigration laws are undergoing a similar investigation by the federal appeals court. According to Education Week, the state wholeheartedly defended the current constituents of HB 56 on March 1. The current law requires all residents to show their green cards or other forms of permanent residence or citizenship in schools, for employment, housing and other business contracts, including utilities such as water and electricity.