Results of the IE Web Poll (as of May 3):
- 43% – “I believe undocumented workers contribute to this nation and have a right to be here.
- 30% – I believe in some kind of reform, but not complete legalization or complete deportation of undocumented workers.
- 26% – I believe undocumented workers are taking away resources from citizens. I support tougher immigration laws.
- 1% – I believe the current immigration policy is fine.
“Clear the visa backlogs and reunite over 2 million Asian Pacific American families who have waited for years for their loved ones; legalize and help over 1 million undocumented APA community members to become citizens; restore human rights and due process for the 9,000 APAs facing summary deportation!”
Diane Narasaki, Executive Director, Asian Counseling Referral Service (ACRS)
“I think it’s important to start with the premise that the United States is a nation of immigrants. This country is also a nation of laws; unfortunately, the opponents of a comprehensive immigration reform, many within our Asian American communities, are quick to forget that immoral laws / legislations have inflicted injustice upon our communities not too long ago and justify harsh enforcement-based legislations to protect their psychological and economic interests masking as “lawful order.” In my opinion, immigration reform must begin with the premise that the strength and appeal of this country and its ideal are edged on the Statue of Liberty.”
Immigration reform must first be just and humane. Linh Thai, Vietnamese community member
“(What I’d prioritize:) There is a language in CIR HR 4321 (the Immigration Reform Act of 2009) that has a language that would let immigration judges to rule on a case by case – that means restoring an immigration judge’s discretion. Also another language in there would bar removal of refugee children under the age of 12 years-old. “
Many Uch, Cambodian youth activist, Khmer in Action (KIA)
Arizona’s new Immigration bill signed into law on April 23, requires police officers to ask for identification from anyone they suspect of being an illegal immigrant. Opponents said the new law will encourage racial profiling and break up families by permitting the indefinite detention of suspected undocumented immigrants. Pramila Jayapal, executive director of OneAmerica, a local immigrant empowerment organization, shares her thoughts on the bill.
I think it is a terrible thing for the whole country on many levels. First, it not only condones but encourages racial profiling. Second, it diverts law enforcement resources from what they should be spent on — keeping the community safe — to meaningless arrests of hardworking people. Third, we know there will be other “copycat” legislation. There are already some drafts circulating in Ohio. This just spreads racial profiling to other states. Finally, this obscures the real debate we should be having and the real legislation that needs to be passed which is around true comprehensive immigration reform. That is what will fix the broken system systematically and for the long-term and that is where everyone needs to be focusing their attention.
Pramila Jayapal, Executive Director and Founder, OneAmerica (formerly Hate-Free Zone)