In the century preceding its destruction by Darth Malak, Taris experienced a devastating planet-wide famine among the working classes. In desperation, the poor declared war on the nobility, only to have their rebellion quickly and violently put down.
Since many of the rebellions' leaders were nonhuman immigrants, those in power sought to quell further unrest by enacting a number of harsh anti-alien laws. Nonhumans were banned from public office and forbidden to leave the lower levels of the city without special government permits. The institutionalized segregation of nonhumans inevitably fostered an anti-alien prejudice among the human population, though many Republic historians prefer to gloss over this unsavory fact.