North Texas

Fort Worth to Tackle Controversial Immigration Law

Council member says he'll fight to challenge "sanctuary city ban"

A Fort Worth City Council member says he will plead with other city leaders on Tuesday to join a lawsuit challenging a new state law on immigration known as the "sanctuary city ban."

"It really leaves to door open for a lot of discrimination, I believe," said Carlos Flores, a newly elected council member who represents largely Latino areas of North Fort Worth.

Fort Worth is the biggest Texas city not to join a lawsuit to stop the law, also known as Senate Bill 4, or SB-4.

"There are a lot of provisions there that are seemingly unconstitutional, and I really do think Fort Worth ought to join the lawsuit against it," said Flores, an engineer.

The law, set to take effect Sept. 1, would allow police to question people, even in traffic stops, about their immigration status.

It also would fine local officials who don't cooperate with federal immigration agents by, for example, denying access to jail inmates.

The Fort Worth council is set to be briefed on the law at its 3 p.m. work session.

"I'm anxious to go ahead and engage on this issue," Flores said.

Other city leaders appear to support the law.

Mayor Betsy Price has said Fort Worth is not a sanctuary city and she sees no value in joining the legal fight against SB-4.

No matter the challenge, Flores said he won't be deterred.

"I'm an optimist by heart," he said. "So I'm going to give it my best effort and make my best arguments."

A rally by an immigration rights group called United Fort Worth also is planned for Tuesday evening.

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