Undocumented Immigration In California

Capital Public Radio’s News Department is devoting a whole year to examining one of the most important and polarizing issues of our time. Our goal is to create a body of work that will enlighten and advance the conversation in California and beyond.

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California Governor Signs Bill Removing 'Alien' From Law

Andrew Nixon / Capital Public Radio
 

Andrew Nixon / Capital Public Radio

(AP) - Gov. Jerry Brown has signed a bill to remove the term "alien" from the California labor code to describe foreign-born workers.

Brown announced Monday that he signed SB432 by Democratic Sen. Tony Mendoza of Artesia.

Mendoza said removing the term "alien" was an important step toward modernizing California law because it is now commonly considered a derogatory term with very negative connotations.

The state began using the term "alien" in 1937 to describe people who are not born or naturalized citizens in the United States.

In 1970, the Legislature repealed labor code that discriminated against immigrant workers by requiring that citizens be given preferential treatment for employment. However, the term can still be found in other portions of the labor code.

The new law takes effect next year.