Immigration
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“Remember, remember always, that all of us, you and I especially, are descended from immigrants and revolutionists.”

— President Franklin D. Roosevelt

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“Everywhere immigrants have enriched and strengthened the fabric of American life.”

— President John F. Kennedy

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“We the people of this continent are not afraid of foreigners because many of use were once foreigners.”

— Pope Francis

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“A child on the other side of the border is no less worthy of love and compassion than my own child.”

— President Barack Obama

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“A broken immigration system means broken families and broken lives.”

— Jose Antonio Vargas

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“America was built by immigrants. Immigrants come here for work - to contribute and get to a better place. That's my story. It's a story of hope.”

— Dania Ramirez

Fact Sheet We Can Make a Difference!

 
  • Simply being in America without documentation is not a crime.
    Politifact
  • A single deportation costs the average American $10,000
    America’s Voice
  • The immigrant community is a net benefit to the U.S. economy, as the average immigrant pays more in taxes than they collect in government services.
    Center on Budget and Policy Priorities
  • Without guest workers, the US economy would lose billions of dollars a year in agricultural production and much of the current production would go overseas.
    Center on Budget and Policy Priorities
  • Of the 19 hijackers that attacked the U.S. on 9-11, 18 entered the country on tourist or business visas and 1 on a student visa. None entered as immigrants or refugees.
    FactCheck
  • In 2017, about 29 million immigrants were working or looking for work in the U.S., making up some 17% of the total civilian labor force.
    Pew Research Center
  • As the Baby Boom generation heads into retirement, immigrants and their children are expected to offset a decline in the working-age population by adding about 18 million people of working age between 2015 and 2035.
    Pew Research Center
  • A country's economical output is higher and grows faster with more immigrants.
    Brookings

Movies

With unprecedented access to ICE operations, as well as moving portraits of immigrants, this docuseries takes a deep look at US immigration today. Filmed from 2017-2020, what goes on in the Trump-era ICE operations is uncovered.

Where to WatchNetflix

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America's broken immigration system leaves a slew of victims in its rudderless wake. Film reveals the staggering human and material cost of illegal immigration to the U.S.A. Documentary is a raw depiction of death, torture and hardship suffered by Americans and foreigners due to illegal immigration. Due to possible political backlash all crew have voluntarily withheld their credits from the film.

Where to Watch: Amazon, YouTube, Tubi

What does the “American dream” look like through the eyes of today's immigrants and refugees? From Nigeria, India, the Dominican Republic, Mexico, and the Israeli-occupied West Bank, they come with different dreams: to achieve athletic glory or high-tech riches, to escape poverty and persecution, to provide for their families. This seven-part series follows these newcomers from each of their homelands through their first tumultuous years in America.

Where to Watch: Amazon Prime Video

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Challenges

Migration and internal displacement are among the most pressing topics on the international agenda today. Refugees, and immigrants especially, are faced with many barriers once they arrive on our shores.

  • Raising children and helping them succeed in school
  • Securing work
  • Securing housing
  • Accessing social services
  • Transportation
  • Cultural barriers
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Recent Successes

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White House - The United States can have an orderly, secure, and well-managed border while treating people fairly and humanely.

In January, the Biden-Harris Administration launched a broad, whole of government effort to reform our immigration system, including sending to Congress legislation that creates a new system to responsibly manage and secure our border, provide a pathway to citizenship, and better manage migration across the Hemisphere.

Pew Trusts - Two Vermont cities have joined the short but growing list of jurisdictions that allow residents who are not U.S. citizens to vote in local elections.

Last week, the Vermont legislature overrode vetoes by Republican Gov. Phil Scott, greenlighting voter-approved changes to the city charters of Montpelier and Winooski. Those cities now allow all residents over age 18 to vote in city elections, regardless of citizenship status. Noncitizen voting in federal elections remains illegal nationwide.

The movement to let all adults vote in local elections hasn’t had widespread success in modern times. Until lately, just San Francisco and nine Maryland cities have allowed noncitizens to vote in local or school board elections. While two towns in Massachusetts have passed resolutions in recent years calling for noncitizens to be allowed to vote locally, the state legislature has yet to approve those changes. But those cities may soon have company.

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Capital and Main - California is set to become the first state to offer government-funded health insurance to low-income undocumented immigrants ages 50 and above — the latest historic expansion of safety net supports for Golden State residents no matter their citizenship status.

Governor Gavin Newsom recently unveiled this year’s $263 billion state budget, which expands social services for undocumented Californians. The state is paying for the equity-boosting measures with a surplus of tax dollars from the state’s richest residents and federal aid meant to help states recover from the COVID-19 pandemic.

“Regardless of your immigration status, we have your back,” Newsom said last week while announcing the budget.

Oftentimes, undocumented immigrants are unaware of their full rights while in the US and are unable to receive proper legal support when facing deportation. That’s partly because existing legal services are severely overwhelmed. Currently, the country’s 58 immigration courts face a backlog of more than half a million cases, and immigrants are represented by a small number of often pro-bono groups.

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If you are interested in seeing change, contact your local and state politician to inform them. This is a basic right every citizen has to be able to make your beliefs known to the person who is supposed to represent you in government.

Speak Spanish? Speak ‘legalese’? Have teaching experience? Know how to make a photocopy? Have a spare room?

You might be a perfect candidate to volunteer with immigrant populations — both documented and undocumented. Volunteering is a great way for concerned citizens to help undocumented immigrants. It also gives immigrants an opportunity to interact with someone outside of their immediate family, and even their neighborhood.

Volunteer translators and interpreters help translate birth certificates, sit in on oath ceremonies, and facilitate community events. Lawyers are needed for pro-bono representation and legal advising.

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Recent Events

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Upcoming Events

Attend Guadalupe Maravilla's art exhibit/performance, where he explores how the systemic abuse of immigrants physically manifests in the body; a combination of pre-colonial Central American ancestry, personal mythology, and collaborative performative acts to trace the history of displacement. 

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