Residents Speak out about Fremont’s Immigration Law

The panel heard hours of testimony about Fremont's ordinance banning hiring or renting property to illegal immigrants. The ordinance is on hold because of legal challenges, but people are still speaking out about it.

The small town of Fremont Nebraska is getting some big attention.

The Nebraska advisory board held a hearing in Lincoln about the controversial immigration ordinance that would ban hiring or renting to illegal immigrants.

Krista Kjeldgaard taught English as a second language, she says the ordinance is causing people to discriminate against children of immigrants who are here legally.

 “I'm concerned because we're seeing increased pressure from our politicians about policies that will limit educational opportunities for children in Nebraska,”Kjeldgaard said

Bob Gregurich is the son of a legal immigrant. He supports the ordinance.

“This constitution was written for the citizens of this country not for anybody that sneaks in and claims rights under it,”Gregurich said.

Michael Ostrom says since the ordinance passed there have been more than 65 reports of threats and vandalism against Hispanic residents. He asked the panel to report on the damaging affects the ordinance has already had without even going into effect.

“It appears the passage of the ordinance has emboldened those who harbor resentment or anger toward Hispanic residents and to express that anger in threatening ways in response to those reports no proactive measure have been taken by city leaders to address those offenses,”Ostrom said.

The advisory panel reports what they heard today to the U.S. Commission on civil rights. They will probably write a policy brief what the commission does with the findings is up to them.