Wednesday, October 14, 2009

Time to Come Together

The blogs are all buzzing with chatter about yesterday's rally and Rep. Gutierrez's introduction of principles for his bill on comprehensive immigration reform. Yes, the principles are more vague than some of us had hoped. No, this appears not to be yet another enforcement-heavy bill like those we have seen in the past few years. So, let's take this moment to recognize this opportunity for what it is - a real opportunity to advance immigration reform this Congress - and come together.

Rather than making divisive statements, or threatening not to support Gutierrez's bill if it does not include certain provisions, let's rally as pro-migrant advocates around the country to show strong support for immigration reform. With the combined efforts of organizations, communities, and individuals, it will be possible to work together to ensure that provisions are included that protect all families and preserve the dignity of all immigrants.

Supporters of humane immigrant reform can't afford not to support a progressive bill. Let's come together to take advantage of this window of opportunity to pass a bill this Congress.

And let's not forget the urgency of these reforms. The network of jails and prisons detaining immigrants is still expanding. Families are still waiting in decade-long backlogs to be reunited with their loved ones. Workers are still denied the opportunity to bring grievances against employers for exploitation.

As a reminder of this urgency, Georgia Detention Watch just produced an excellent short video on the expansion of detention facilities in Georgia. Take a look:

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