Legal Momentum joined the court battle to overturn Arizona's controversial immigration law, Senate Bill 1070 (S.B. 1070) in June 2010. The lawsuit, Friendly House v. Whiting, was brought by the ACLU (American Civil Liberties Union), MALDEF (the Mexican American Legal Defense and Education Fund), the National Immigration Law Center and the Asian Pacific American Legal Resource Center. Legal Momentum's brief outlined key areas in which S.B. 1070 undermined federal civil rights protections for immigrant women and their families, including those who are victims of violent crime.
Judge Susan R. Bolton issued an order in July 2010 that blocked the most controversial parts of S.B. 1070 from going into effect. Her order stated that the DOJ would likely prevail on the merits in showing that certain sections of S.B. 1070 were preempted by federal law.
Accordingly, the order blocked the sections that would have required:
- Officers to check a person's immigration status while enforcing other laws;
- Immigrants to carry their "papers" at all times; and,
- Immigrants to refrain from seeking work.
The order also enjoined officers from conducting warrantless arrests of individuals based on a belief that a person may have committed a public offense that would make her removable from the U.S.