Speak up for Melanie?
Your message to friends:
I just got this moving email from MomsRising and I spoke up for comprehensive, and inclusive, immigration reform. I hope you will to:
*It only takes a moment!
PS: More info in the forwarded email below.
As I listened to the barrage of news this week on immigration, I kept thinking about an 8-year-old girl I met in Georgia in 2011.
Melanie is a star student and Girl Scout. Her mother bravely spoke about how Georgia's treatment of immigrants was affecting families. Melanie clung to her mother and cried while her mother told us how difficult it was when she had to tell Melanie that they might be forced to move back to Mexico if Georgia passed a harsh new anti-immigrant law. Melanie's mother also proudly told us that Melanie took it upon herself to write Georgia's governor:
“I want to tell you something special, to not sign the law, because I don’t want to leave my school and this country.” -- Melanie, age 8 (1)
Melanie shouldn't be alone in speaking up! Your voice is needed!
*Tell Congress: Now is the time! We need comprehensive, and inclusive, immigration reform that strengthens our families, unifies our communities, supports our national economy, and includes a roadmap to citizenship for aspiring citizens:
Melanie’s story is not unique. Sadly, 5 million children in our nation live in fear of being separated from their parents and forced to leave the only country that they have ever known. (2) Children who are immigrants themselves, and U.S. citizen children with immigrant parents face high rates of family separation, emotional trauma, poor educational outcomes and economic instability. (3)
We cannot allow children to suffer any more due to our broken immigration system.
According to the latest Associated Press poll, the majority of Americans favor providing a process for undocumented immigrants already in the United States to become U.S. citizens.(4) This is especially critical for immigrant mothers who work hard to contribute to our communities and care for their families, yet day in and day out too many of them fear that they could be separated from their children.
Earlier this week, the President reiterated that immigration reform is a high priority for his administration. Yet even with this, and even though a bi-partisan committee of Senators have just released their principles for comprehensive immigration reform (5), there is no guarantee that Congress will stop their posturing and agree on policies that are good for all of our families and ensure a thriving economy that acknowledges the contributions of immigrant mothers, and all immigrants.
*Send a message to Congress: Now is the time! Now is the time for comprehensive, and inclusive, immigration reform that strengthens our families, unifies our communities, supports our national economy, and includes a roadmap to citizenship for aspiring citizens:
More than half of immigrants in the United States are women. (6) Many are mothers like you and me, working hard, volunteering in our children's schools and communities and doing all that we can to ensure that our loved ones have the best possible future.
Immigrant families are an important part of our economy. Over the last 15 years, immigrants have increased the rate by which they start businesses by more than 50 percent, and undocumented immigrants contributed more than $11 billion to our economy in 2010 alone. (7, 8)
But right now, too many families and businesses in the United States are suffering because we lack a fair, modernized roadmap to citizenship for aspiring citizens. The clock is ticking for families and for our economy. We are ready for solutions.
An immigration policy that makes children afraid of being separated from their parents is not reflective of our shared values as a people. Families belong together. And parents in our country should be able to work hard and be able to provide for the well-being of their families.
*Please join me in sending a message to Congress that now is the time for comprehensive, and inclusive, immigration reform that strengthens our families, unifies our communities, supports our national economy, and includes a roadmap to citizenship for aspiring citizens:
Together we are a powerful force for women and families. Thank you!
--Mary, Kristin, Elisa, Sarah, Monifa, Gloria, Anita, Charlie, Jane, dream, and the whole MomsRising team
(1) We Belong Together: http://www.webelongtogether.org/resources/report-from-georgia-delegation
(2) Applied Research Center, “The Perilous Intersection of Immigration Enforcement and Child Welfare System”, http://arc.org/shatteredfamilies
(3) Center for American Progress, “How Today’s Immigration Enforcement Policies Impact Children, Families, and Communities”, http://www.americanprogress.org/wp-content/uploads/2012/08/DrebyImmigrationFamiliesFINAL.pdf
(4) Associated Press, “Poll: Many Say Let Illegal Immigrants Stay in US”, http://abcnews.go.com/US/wireStory/poll-illegal-immigrants-stay-us-18287701
(5) “Bipartisan Framework for Comprehensive Immigration Reform”; Senators Schumer, McCain, Durbin, Graham, Menendez, Rubio, Bennet, and Flake; http://www.c-span.org/uploadedFiles/Content/Documents/Bipartisan-Framework-For-Immigration-Reform.pdf
(6) The National Coalition for Immigrant Women’s Rights, “Quick Facts About Women and Immigration”, http://nciwr.wordpress.com/media-center/quick-facts-women-immigration/
(7) Partnership for a New American Economy, “Open for Business: How Immigrants Are Driving Small Business Creation in the United States”, http://www.renewoureconomy.org/sites/all/themes/pnae/openforbusiness.pdf
(8) Immigration Policy Center, “Unauthorized Immigrations Pay Taxes, Too”, http://www.immigrationpolicy.org/just-facts/unauthorized-immigrants-pay-taxes-too
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