Arizona tribes worried about state's anti-immigration law
The Inter Tribal Council of Arizona says the state's new anti-immigration law could infringe on tribal sovereignty and lead to racial profiling.

The Tohono O'odham Nation, the Pascua Yaqui Tribe and the Cocopah Tribe have reservations along or near the U.S.-Mexico border. Tribal members used to be able to freely cross the border but have run into problems in recent years.

“We have a range of concerns, including tribal sovereign nations not being recognized as able to define and protect their own borders as they see fit, and the possibility that tribal citizens will be profiled by police,” ITCA Director John Lewis told Indian Country Today.

“This impacts all indigenous people, and the lawmakers need to know it,” Lewis added. “America’s boundaries are not tribal boundaries.”

The tribes have already dealt with controversial anti-immigration and anti-terrorism restrictions. The Tohono O'odham Nation unsuccessfully opposed a fence along the U.S. border.

Members of the Pascua Yaqui Tribe protested when they were being pulled over by sheriff's deputies for looking "Mexican." And the Cocopah Tribe had to tell a citizens group to stop coming to the reservation to "patrol" the border.

Get the Story:
Arizona law draws widespread indigenous opposition (Indian Country Today 5/3)

Related Stories:
Pascua Yaquis targeted for looking 'Mexican' (6/4)