Stop Abusing Immigrants details

At the border and elsewhere, tens of thousands of immigrants are held in humiliating, painful, and sometimes fatal detention, separated from their families, and often deported, without due process, back to the circumstances from which they fled. In a repeating and circular process, those conditions are too often the result of US foreign policy.

The U.S. needs a complete overhaul of its immigration laws, procedures, and programs. Our current situation has created extreme injustice.

Historically, the privileges of legal immigration and citizenship have been extended to favored groups -overwhelmingly white Europeans -while systemic racism has kept others out.

Despite politicians’ constant attacks on undocumented immigrants, the US economy depends on them for vast amounts of work, for which they often receive little pay, no benefits, poor treatment, and almost no legal protection.

We need a pathway to legal residency and citizenship for undocumented immigrants living in the United States, DACAand TPS recipients, and essential workers such as farm workers and in-home care providers, and all people fleeing political, racial, religious, or other types of persecution.

We should provide permanent border passes to all citizens of Mexico and Canada whose identity can be traced and verified. When someone comes to the border, check their ID and if they’re not wanted by the authorities, let them pass.

Make work permits easily obtainable to decriminalize the act of gainful employment. This would help eliminate exploitation by criminals engaged in human contraband and unethical employers, help ensure that taxes are paid, and help immigrants to secure driving privileges and liability insurance.

The true measure of a society is how it treats its most vulnerable members. The United States prides itself as a “nation of immigrants”, yet our cruel and dehumanizing treatment of immigrants makes those words ring hollow. We must find the courage to upend the status quo and create an immigration system that will allow millions of our neighbors the right to a life of dignity, liberty and the pursuit of happiness.

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  • David Doonan
    published this page in Issues 2022-08-29 17:33:07 -0400