Thursday, February 9th, 2017

Immigrants Without Papers in Georgia Rely on Taxis for Transportation

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"At sunrise in Gainsville, brightly coloured taxis arrive one after another outside the gates of a chicken processing plant. It's not exactly Manhattan at rush hour but the roads of this small Georgia town, with a population approximately 35,000, are full of taxis. The thriving taxi businesses are an unexpected consequence of a tough immigration law which has been in effect in Gainsville for several years and is similar to controversial legislation passed in other southern US states. Police have the power to ask a driver about their immigration status even if they are stopped for a minor traffic violation. Many undocumented workers, fearful that a speeding ticket could turn into deportation, now use taxis for everything from commuting, to work, to grocery shopping. Supporters of the law say that legal residents have nothing to worry about and point to the fact that many illegal workers are choosing to "self-deport". But critics call it a civil