Text of letter delivered to Davis' office on immigration
This is the text, provided by the Illinois AFL-CIO, of a letter delivered Tuesday at the Champaign office of U.S. Rep. Rodney Davis :
August 20, 2013
The Honorable Rodney Davis
United States House of Representatives/District Office
2004 Fox Drive
Champaign, IL 61820
Dear Representative Davis:
America deserves a vote on immigration reform. The U.S. House of Representatives has an historic opportunity to fix the nation’s badly-broken immigration system - a system that has been separating families, harming workers, and holding back our economy for far too long. However, if immigration reform does not include an achievable roadmap to citizenship for 525,000 aspiring Americans who have been living, working, raising families, and contributing to our communities here in Illinois, it will fail to solve these enormous problems. As organizations representing a broad cross-section of residents in the Thirteenth Congressional District, we are asking for your support for comprehensive immigration reform legislation with a roadmap to citizenship.
Without an attainable roadmap to citizenship, families will continue to be separated by deportation. Deportations are especially devastating to children and destabilize a family financially, which has a ripple effect throughout our local economy. Families are the building blocks of our society and culture, and our immigration policies should not split them apart.
The ability to threaten some working people with deportation and treat them as second-class lowers wages and standards for all workers. A roadmap to citizenship is key to protecting workers. The fear of deportation must be removed and a process must be put in place for immigrant workers to defend their rights, or workers will suffer in an endless race to the bottom.
While undocumented immigrants are already consumers and taxpayers, an attainable pathway to citizenship enhances the economic power of immigrant workers. This ripples through the local economy, benefitting immigrant and U.S. born workers alike. This results in stronger small businesses, increased job growth, and a gain in tax revenue.
Comprehensive immigration reform with a path to citizenship is also a moral imperative. Workers are being stripped of their dignity and children are left vulnerable when they are separated from their families. Our faith traditions teach us to protect the poorest and weakest in our midst, to love our neighborhood, and welcome the strangers.
We urge your support for comprehensive immigration reform that includes an attainable pathway to citizenship.
Illinois Coalition for Immigrant and Refugee Rights
Champaign Urbana Immigration Forum
Channing Murray Foundation
Social Action Committee of the Unitarian Universalist Church of Urbana Champaign
Immigration Forum: Allies of Faith
Faith Coalition for the Common Good
Decatur Trades and Labor Assembly
Springfield and Central Illinois Trades and Labor
Illinois Peoples Action
Champaign County Health Care Consumers
SEIU State Council/Local 73
Champaign County ACLU
Graduate Employees' Organization IFT/AFT Local 6300 AFL-CIO
Champaign-Urbana Citizens for Peace and Justice
Urbana Champaign Independent Media Center
Central Illinois Jobs with Justice
Korean American Resource and Cultural Center
National Korean American Service & Education Consortium (NAKASEC)
Champaign County Labor Council
Urbana-Champaign Friends Meeting
Bloomington-Normal Trades and Labor Assembly