This Week in Immigration Reform — Week Ending March 3

Week Ending March 3

This week in immigration: NCLR responds to the President’s address to a joint session of Congress and highlights additional tools for advocates.

NCLR responds to president’s address to a joint session of Congress: This week, the president gave an address to a joint session of Congress and NCLR expressed continued deep concern over President Trump’s pursuit of policies that undermine the significant progress made by Latinos and other diverse communities across the United States. “President Trump’s moderated tone and soft overtures to bipartisanship do not make the policies he has implemented and defended mightily in this speech any less harsh,” said NCLR President and CEO Janet Murguía. “The policies are still the policies he has been touting since the beginning of the campaign, and his justifications are still as hyperbolic and fictional as they’ve ever been.”

In an op-ed published in The Hill, Janet Murguía noted that the President’s statements continue to peddle fiction about the immigrant community, writing “Last night, President Trump painted immigrants with the same ugly, broad brush he used during the campaign. It was a slur then and it is a slur now.”

Meanwhile, in the Capitol as guests of many Democratic members of congress, refugees, DREAMers, DACA recipients, and U.S. citizen children whose mother has been deported spoke out about the impact that the president’s policies are having on them and on their communities. In addition to the guests in the audience, Astrid Silva, one of the more than 750,000 DACA recipients in the country, delivered the Democratic Party’s response in Spanish.

NCLR’s Janet Murguía op-ed in the The Washington PostIn response to the recent DHS memos establishing a mass deportation blueprint, Janet Murguía wrote an op-ed published in The Washington Post, writing “For Latinos, this is an existential moment…It will leave no community untouched. More than 5 million U.S. citizens have undocumented parents. Deporting these parents will leave their children parentless, traumatized and often destitute. We would rather see these Americans achieve their potential.” Check out the op-ed for NCLR’s call to action.

NCLR and its Affiliates have been responding to the recent detentions of DACA recipients and longtime community members by ICE. In Mississippi this week, NCLR Affiliate, the Mississippi Immigrants’ Rights Alliance (MIRA) worked with other community members to lift up the story of Dany Vargas, a 22-year-old undocumented immigrant who was arrested and detained this week after speaking to the media about her experience hiding in a closet as ICE raided her house and detained her father and her brother.

NCLR Affiliate, Academia Avance, in Los Angeles has been lifting up the case of a father of four daughters who has lived in the U.S. for twenty years and who was detained by ICE this week.

The detention and deportation of these individuals who have strong ties to our country and have been contributors to their communities are in stark contrast to the rhetoric about ‘bad hombres’ that President Trump and Speaker Ryan are using to describe who ICE is going after.  This is also not what the majority of the American people want.

People can find an immigration legal service provider near them by going to immigrationlawhelp.org – a directory of nonprofit immigration legal service providers. 

Know Your Rights information can be found here.

Tools you can use: The Institute on Taxation and Economic Policy released a report this week providing data on the amounts of taxes undocumented immigrants contribute at the state and local level. As the Institute notes, the report “provides data that helps dispute the erroneous idea espoused during President Trump’s address to Congress that undocumented immigrants are a drain to taxpayers.” In addition to noting that undocumented immigrants contribute $11.74 billion annually to state and local coffers, the report provides state level data.

 NCLR has created a factsheet to provide facts about immigrants and immigration.

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