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C-NET to air “Decriminalizing Border Crossings” with Penn State Law Professor Victor Romero


In honor of the late Barbara Jordan's service as chair of the 1994-95 U.S. Commission on Immigration Reform, Penn State Law Professor Victor Romero presented, "Decriminalizing Border Crossings" as the guest speaker for the 2011 Barbara Jordan Lecture on March 21. The program is scheduled to air on C-NET’s CETV next week.

Placing recent state and local anti-immigrant laws in the broader context of the federal government's regulation of our borders, Professor Romero argued that an international border crosser should only be deemed a criminal if the U.S. government can prove that, with requisite criminal intent, she engaged in an act aside from crossing the border that would constitute a crime; no longer should crossing the border be a strict liability criminal offense. He believes such a change will restore balance to the civil immigration system, conserve scarce enforcement resources in order to target truly criminal behavior, enhance our standing abroad, and help heal our racially-polarized discourse on immigration policy.

The Africana Research Center and the Department of African and African American Studies initiated the Barbara Jordan Lecture Series in 2004 to recognize and introduce the Penn State community to the scholarship of African American civil rights activist Jordan.

A scholar of immigrant and minority rights, Professor Romero recently authored “Can State Immigration Laws Ever Mirror Federal Immigration Policy?” as a guest columnist in Jurist’s Forum.

Professor Romero is the Maureen B. Cavanaugh Distinguished Faculty Scholar and Professor of Law at the law School.

Watch the webcast of the 2011 Barbara Jordan lecture featuring Victor C. Romero.

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