Best Way to Move Bill Forward is to Keep Families Together Who Are Working Toward Reform
Congressman Gutierrez as well as Reps. Jackson-Lee, Schakowsky, Titus, Clarke, Cardenas and others join fathers facing deportation and representatives of more than 500 immigrant rights organizations to deliver a letter asking President Obama to suspend deportations for those who would be entitled to eventual citizenship in the immigration bill being currently debated.
The press conference with the National Day Laborer Organizing Network, Gamaliel, Casa in Action, United We Dream, MALDEF, and the AFL-CIO comes the day after the President brought together immigration reform advocates at the White House to discuss the way forward.
”We call on the President to relieve the suffering of families by ceasing deportations as Congress debates reform,” said Oscar Alfaro. Oscar, who had previously received a stay of deportation, was recently denied a renewal. Oscar and his family have battled tirelessly in support of the President’s vision for immigration reform yet may be deported in these next few weeks if the President doesn’t take action to protect him and the 1,100 others who are deported on a daily basis from the United States
(Los Angeles) Following President's speech on immigration, Pablo Alvarado, director of the National Day Laborer Organizing Network made the following statement:
"Immigration reform has been on the national agenda for ten years, and we are mindful the politics have never been more poisonous. However, we hope the President will use his political capital and his persuasive powers to help steer the debate back to a more productive course. After all, the loud voices who favor punishing this generation's Americans-in-Waiting are the very same people who suspected the President himself was an undocumented immigrant. It's time to move beyond the Arizonification of American politics. The nation's first African American president has a unique opportunity to take racism out of the political discourse on immigration.
Like Congressman Luis Gutierrez though, we all want to feel the same sense of hope and optimism we felt in 2008. However, words alone will no longer be enough. The President must earn Latinos' support through actions that move the country toward a policy granting us political equality, through the regularization of our immigrant families' status. The goal contained in Arizona's SB1070, the criminalization of immigrants, is mutually exclusive with the goal of legalization. While Republicans have coelesced on a nativist position that will be shamed by history, it is not sufficient for the President to simply blame Congress for inaction. The President must lead by example, and we will measure his commitment to immigration reform by taking stock of his actions.If the President seriously wants to move the debate forward, he can start by answering the Congressional Hispanic Caucus's call to freeze the misguided Secure Communities as a first step.*"
Pablo Alvarado is available for media inquiries.
NDLON staff is also available for interviews on Secure Communities FOIA litigation, Arizona work, and to provide reporters access to day laborers so their voices can be included.
* In a letter sent Thursday, May 5th, the Congressional Hispanic Caucus called on the President to place a moratorium on SCOMM saying, "[it] will contribute to the criminalization of immigrant families by casting them under a cloud of suspicion and by further conflating civil immigration violations with criminal conduct."
The National Day Laborer Organizing Network represents 43 member organizations and more than 120,000 corner day laborers throughout the country. The mission of the National Day Laborer Organization Network is to improve the lives of day laborers in the U.S. by unifying and strengthening its member organizations to be more strategic and effective in their efforts to develop leadership, mobilize day laborers in order to protect and expand their civil, labor and human rights. Visit www.ndlon.org