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Alabama churches lose Hispanic parishoners

A few weeks ago, we posted about changes in Alabama’s immigration policies. In the weeks and months following those changes, Alabama residents are starting to see their consequences in their churches, neighborhoods, and social groups.

An LA Times article titled “In Alabama, a church sees its Latino brethren vanish” describes some impacts of the changing policies.For years, the congregation of one Alabama church has been comprised primarily of conservative whites and Hispanic immigrants. The church seeks to meet the needs of both groups, including a Hispanic mission service and both English and Spanish-speaking services. Since the new laws went into effect, many Alabama citizens have seen the numbers of their fellow parishioners decreasing, as many Hispanics are leaving the state.

The LA Times article illustrates the welcoming nature of many Alabama residents, who disagree with the new policies. One white church member states that “The law…was mean-spirited, an attempt to score political points.” Other parishioners also express displeasure, another man stating that, “I’d hate for them to go back to what they came from…All
of them are good workers, and not working jobs that white people would

Click here to read the full story, including photos by Don Bartletti, photojournalist of Enrique’s Journey.

2 thoughts on “Alabama churches lose Hispanic parishoners

  1. "All of them are good workers, and not working jobs that white people would take."

    I'm someone from Alabama, yes, surprise, we have computers and the internet!

    I wanted to give you something to think about. Illegal aliens took a lot of jobs in Alabama that WHITE people might not have been working, but black people were. Black women specifically.

    They were almost completely run out of the hotel maid industry in our state and forced onto welfare. Why? Because the illegals worked for companies that sub-contracted to clean the hotels in many cases. So the hotel didn't have to fool with paying income, FICA and SS taxes on all the aliens. And the subcontracting companies could pay the illegals whatever they wanted. Those women were usually working for far less than minimum wage in those cases. And it was black American women and their children that suffered from those job loses.

    White and black teenagers suffered job loses as well. Since the influx of illegal aliens into Alabama, teens as a group have been the most underemployed in the states history.

    The situation impacted close to home. In my own family, my just graduated from HS teen was working two part time jobs to make ends meet and save for college and a car. But when the immigration law passed in Alabama, he was offered full time hours at one job, THE VERY NEXT DAY. He was able to quit his second job and that job then went to another American citizen who had been unemployed.

    It's nothing against anyone. It's not racist. It's just that we feel our sons and daughters and friends should be working FIRST. But it is extremely hard to compete with a labor force that will work under the table.

    So before people attack American citizens in Alabama, please stop and consider what it was like for us.