While supporters of Alabama’s new restrictive immigration enforcement legislation believe it is ultimately a jobs creation program for U.S. citizens, many economic advisors are now publicly stating that the law will harm the state’s economic health. The law, which is scheduled to take effect September 1, 2011, will, according to key economists, put the stigma of the 1960s back on Alabama.
According to the U.S Census Bureau, up to 54,000 Hispanics work in Alabama, about 2.7 percent of the state’s total workforce. The majority of Hispanics work in construction, manufacturing and production. It is feared that Alabama will feel the same negative consequences that other states with restrictive legislations (such as Arizona) have felt. With an already weakened economy, many economists fear the blowback from this law will have grave consequences.