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USA: Bush Immigration Proposals: False Hopes

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  • SIUHIN@aol.com
    Bush Immigration Proposals: False Hopes Immigrant Rights Watch News Services from Immigrant Solidarity Network and ActionLA Coalition January 8, 2004 Web:
    Message 1 of 1 , Jan 8, 2004
      Bush Immigration Proposals: False Hopes
      Immigrant Rights Watch
      News Services from Immigrant Solidarity Network and ActionLA Coalition
      January 8, 2004
      Web: http://www.actionla.org/ISN/

      Yesterday's Bush proposals for immigration reform outlined "promises" little
      hope for millions of undocumented workers in this country to be legalized. A
      three-year, renewable temporary worker visa - provides no definitive path
      toward legalization, but rather, ensures a pool of cheap labor for "bad jobs" that
      American workers try to avoid. It's no more then another poly to continue foce
      immgrant labors to be "immgrants" for ever for exploitation.

      Equally, beginning from this week, the new US-VISIT program will for force up
      to 28 million visitors to the United States have to stop for photographs and
      fingerprinting at the port of entry, intended to make it harder for what
      Department of Homeland Security says to stop possbile "terrorists" to enter the c
      ountry. This is again, no more then a racists programs, giving the facts that
      all western European country citizens are exempted from the photographs and
      fingerprinting, and telling everyone, from this point, it's OK for the government
      to violate our civil liberities and legal rights.

      **Bush Immigration Proposals: False Hopes
      Date: 1/7/2004 8:44:24 PM Pacific Standard Time
      From: nnirr@...
      National Network for Immigrant and Refugee Rights

      Jan. 7, 2004

      Contact: Cathi Tactaquin or Claudia Gómez
      510.465.1984 x302 or 304

      Bush Administration's Immigration Reform Pitches False Hopes

      No Concrete Proposal for Comprehensive Legalization
      of Undocumented Immigrans Families

      Oakland, CA - The proposal for immigration reform outlined today by
      President George Bush promises little hope for fair wages or decent
      working conditions, much less opportunity for legal status, for the
      millions of undocumented immigrant workers in the U.S. Instead, the
      proposed "new" policy amounts to little more than another "guestworker"
      program, with even fewer protections and opportunities than programs
      currently under consideration in Congress. The Bush proposal might be
      good for employers wanting cheap and vulnerable labor, but does little
      to contribute to the human rights and well-being of immigrant workers.

      The National Network for Immigrant and Refugee Rights and other
      immigrant rights advocates hoped that the Administration would finally
      follow through on its pledge of over two years ago to consider a path to
      permanent residency for the hundreds of thousands of undocumented
      immigrants who live and work in the U.S.

      However, the main fix that the President proposes - a three-year,
      renewable temporary worker visa - provides no definitive path toward
      legalization, but rather, ensures a pool of cheap labor for "bad jobs"
      that American workers try to avoid. Nor did the proposal specify how
      immigrant families could be united or remain together in the U.S., only
      that participants could leave to visit home countries and gain re-entry.

      The President also spoke of the tragic deaths of migrants at the
      U.S.-Mexico border, indicating that his proposals for temporary work
      visas would help migrants who have been victimized by smugglers.
      However, he also reaffirmed border security policies which themselves
      have contributed to discrimination, abuse and violence against
      immigrants in the border regions, sometimes at the hands of border
      patrol agents. After September 11, stepped-up "militarization" of the
      border has forced desperate men, women and children into more hazardous
      migration situations.

      The President's proposal did not specify changes to the current legal
      immigration program, which is woefully backlogged and inadequate in
      addressing the demand for immigration access. Since participants in the
      new temporary worker program would have "fall in line" to apply for
      permanent residency status, they too would be thrust into the existing
      backlog that itself contributes to undocumented immigration.

      The fact that the Department of Homeland Security, which is dedicated to
      national security, would be responsible for implementing the proposed
      program is also disturbing. DHS immigration enforcement programs, as
      described in NNIRR's recent report, Human Rights and Human Security at
      Risk, already jeopardize community safety and compromise access to
      immigration services. DHS oversight provides little incentive for
      undocumented immigrants to emerge from the shadows and identify
      themselves through a program that carries little hope for longterm legal

      Comprehensive immigration reform must include opportunities for
      permanent residency and family reunification, labor protection, access
      to due process, safety and community security. Undocumented immigrant
      students, many of whom have lived in the U.S. most of their lives, have
      been waiting for President Bush to support pending legislation that
      would provide them with access to permanent residency and a future free
      from fear of deportation. Farmworker unions have negotiated with
      agribusiness to bring to Congress legislation that would protect their
      rights as workers and create a path for legal residency. President
      Bush's proposals made no mention of these efforts. Instead, his
      announcement, which comes less than a week before he is scheduled to
      meet with Mexican President Vicente Fox, has the transparency of a
      pre-election appeal to Latino voters -- not a serious attempt to chart
      a path towards a fair and just program of much-needed immigration

      National Network for Immigrant and Refugee Rights (NNIRR)
      310-8th St., Ste. 303
      Oakland, CA 94607
      510.465.1885 (fax)
      Visit us at www.nnirr.org

      National Immigrant Soliadrity Network
      No Immigrant Bashing! Support Immigrant Rights!
      webpage: http://www.actionla.org/ISN/ (For latest immigrant issues/news)

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