Oct. 4, 2013 PRESS STATEMENT — LIRS Welcomes House Immigration Reform Bill, Calls for Immediate Bipartisan Support and Action | LIRS
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Oct. 4, 2013 PRESS STATEMENT — LIRS Welcomes House Immigration Reform Bill, Calls for Immediate Bipartisan Support and Action

Published On: Donate

For Immediate Release

Press Contact: Jon Pattee
(202) 591-5778, jpattee@lirs.org

WASHINGTON, D.C. Oct. 4, 2013 — Lutheran Immigration and Refugee Service (LIRS) applauds the introduction of comprehensive immigration reform legislation, H.R. 15, in the House of Representatives, and calls on members of both parties to pass compassionate and just immigration reform legislation immediately.

“Now is the time for the House of Representatives to enact the immigration reforms included in H.R. 15, which offer an opportunity for America to advance towards a more fair and welcoming set of immigration laws,” said LIRS President and CEO Linda Hartke.  “H.R. 15 makes strides to promote increased family unity, which is vital to our congregations and communities, and offers smart solutions for our economy and country.”

“Congress needs to act quickly to pass smart reforms like those included in H.R. 15 in order to continue its work to help unite families, welcome people fleeing persecution, and provide newcomers with a fair and accessible roadmap to citizenship,” said Hartke.

Many of H.R. 15’s proposed changes to the U.S. immigration system would benefit migrants and refugees, including the provision of a roadmap to citizenship for undocumented immigrants, substantial changes to legal immigration processes, protections for refugees and asylum seekers, and improvements to the enforcement of immigration laws including immigration detention.

H.R. 15, which was introduced by several Democratic members of the House on Oct. 2, is heavily drawn from the Senate’s immigration reform bill, S.744. That bill passed with broad bipartisan support in June.  H.R. 15 also includes parts of a border security bill that has received bipartisan support in the House.

LIRS will continue to work towards passage of comprehensive immigration reform that reflects American values by embodying these principles:

  • Providing a roadmap to citizenship for undocumented immigrants and their families
  • Ensuring humane and just immigration enforcement, specifically by reducing use of detention
  • Safeguarding families from separation and ensuring sufficient visas for families seeking to reunite
  • Promoting integration of those fleeing persecution and of other vulnerable migrants
  • Protecting U.S. citizen and migrant workers

For a closer look at aspects of immigration reform legislation dealing with the roadmap to citizenship, humane enforcement of immigration laws, preservation of family unity, protection of vulnerable migrants, and provisions for workers, see LIRS’s in-depth analyses. For the latest on the legislative process on Capitol Hill, see the LIRS blog series “Immigration Reform 2013: The Update.” The LIRS Comprehensive Immigration Reform Mythbuster debunks common myths and misinformation.

LIRS is nationally recognized for advocating for and with refugees, asylum seekers, unaccompanied children, immigrants in detention, families fractured by migration and other vulnerable populations, and for serving migrants through 60 grassroots legal and social service partners across the United States.

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