Tuesday, May 14, 2013

Open letter on immigration reform, National Network on Immigration and Refugee Rights

As the Senate Judiciary Committee continues the “mark up” process on S. 744, the Border Security, Economic Opportunity and Immigration Modernization Act, we ask you to join our Open Letter in which we urge the Committee to adhere to principles of human rights, fairness and justice.
We are asking for both individual and organizational endorsements of our Open Letter for Fair and Just Immigration Reform. The letter will be sent to Judiciary Committee members prior to the next scheduled mark-up day, May 20.
This endorsement form is for individuals. If you would like to endorse as an individual, please click here. If you would like to endorse as an organization, please click here. http://org2.salsalabs.com/o/5702/p/dia/action3/common/public/?action_KEY=14048
Deadline for signatures: Midnight (Pacific Time), Saturday, May 18.

The letter describes our disappointment in the bill and calls for changes in a number of key areas, reflecting long-held principles and positions in immigration policy. While we are also supporting a number of amendments that would improve certain parts of the legislation, we are very concerned and disagree with the continued emphasis on border security, the shift from family to skills-based immigration, and the overly long and tedious “path” to citizenship, among other issues.
Our communities need changes in the following
1.     Substantially improve the path to citizenship.
2.     Access to a green card should not be dependent upon a “secure border”.
3.     The filing fees are too high.
4.     Maintain the core commitment to family reunification as a criteria.
5.     Continue the Diversity Visa program.
6.     End the prioritization of increase in border enforcement and militarization of the border.
7.     End the current immigration detention system.
8.     Ensure access to full labor protections and labor rights.
9.     End the temporary worker programs as soon as possible.
10. End the enhanced deportation programs.

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