Immigrant Groups Join City Of South Miami In Suit Over Sanctuary City Ban

Jul 16, 2019

Protester Joan Wynne, center, chants anti-Trump and anti-Gimenez slogans in downtown Miami. Tuesday, Jan. 31, 2017. Miami-Dade County Mayor Carlos Gimenez issued a controversial order last week assuring the Trump administration that Miami-Dade is not functioning as a sanctuary city for illegal immigrants.
Credit Alan Diaz / AP

The city of South Miami and immigrant advocacy groups are suing the state of Florida over a new law that bans sanctuary cities and requires local officials to cooperate with federal immigration authorities.

The Southern Poverty Law Center is representing the plaintiffs in the case. Senior Policy Counsel Scott McCoy says the law requires local law enforcement agencies to perform functions of federal immigration agents.

"Under the US Constitution immigration law is reserved to the federal congress. It is not a state issue and in fact under the supremacy clause and the immigration clause, the control of immigration is up to the federal government," says Mccoy.

Additionally the lawsuit alleges the new law will lead to racial profiling, erode trust in law enforcement and potential civil rights violations.

Gov. Ron DeSantis made the issue both a campaign and legislative priority, and state Sen. Joe Gruters pushed the bill through the legislature.

The lawsuit is being filed by the city of South Miami along nine other plaintiffs and names DeSantis and state Attorney General Ashley Moody as defendants.

Updated with comment from SPLC