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ICIRR Calls on US House to Reject Immigration Bills, Work on Real Solutions

CHICAGO (June 18, 2018)--Following is a statement from Lawrence Benito, Executive Director of the Illinois Coalition for Immigrant and Refugee Rights (ICIRR), the state’s largest multiethnic immigrant advocacy organization, urging the US House of Representatives to reject the two immigration bills that are scheduled to come to the House floor this week:

“The bill proposed by Rep. Goodlatte (HR 4760) offers no permanent solution for the 800,000 immigrants currently protected under the Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA) program. However, it would severely limit opportunities to immigrate based on family relationships, humanitarian concerns, and the diversity program while funding a wasteful border wall and massively accelerating indiscriminate enforcement activity that will further devastate immigrant families and communities.  

“The so-called compromise legislation developed by House leadership includes many of the same provisions. In addition, while purporting to address the current administration’s practice of separating children from their parents at the border, this bill will only cause more children to be detained, and does nothing to stop the “zero tolerance” mass prosecution policy that is tearing hundreds of these families apart.  

“Even worse, the opportunity for permanent status that this bill purports to extend to DACA-eligible youth comes at the expense of family-and diversity-based opportunities to immigrate, and proceeds only if construction of the wasteful border wall moves forward.   

“Congress can do better. Rather than craft further measures to terrify and separate immigrant families, House leadership should instead allow a vote on a clean version of the DREAM Act and provide relief for the hundreds of thousands of long-term immigrants who are losing their Temporary Protected Status.  We urge the House to vote NO on the bills that are scheduled to come to the floor this coming week and instead work for real solutions that respect our immigrant families and communities." 

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