Harmful State Legislation

Lutheran Immigration and Refugee is gravely concerned that the punitive immigration bills being considered by many state legislatures would contradict the biblical mandate to care for sojourners in our midst. LIRS recognizes that the U.S. immigration system is in serious need of reform. However, instead of creating a patchwork of state laws that hurts families and sows distrust in communities, LIRS encourages state legislators to continue to pressure Congress and the Administration to overhaul the nation’s immigration laws and policies.

Sharing the Gifts of Welcome

Watch Bishop Allan Bjornberg, Rocky Mountain Synod Bishop (ELCA), Dr. Larry A. Stoterau, President of the Pacific Southwest District (LCMS), and Rev. Rafael Malpica Padilla, (ELCA) Global Mission Executive Director talk about how both the guest and the host share the gifts of welcome and are called into relationship by God.

Birthright, Citizenship, and Politics

Unsatisfied with denying the dreams of undocumented children, anti-immigrant legislators want to take away the right of infants, born in this country, of being full American citizens. They have set their targets on the 14th Amendment, which grants citizenship to any child born in this country regardless of the status of their parents.

Refugee Employment

The ultimate goal of the resettlement process is self-sufficiency, and employment is the cornerstone of that process. It is because of this that in 1997 LIRS created RefugeeWorks, which quickly became the national center for refugee employment. RefugeeWorks specializes in providing exceptional training, consulting and publishing services to the national refugee employment network.

A Small Step for Courts, a Huge Leap for Migrants

With a new Congress setting the immigration agenda to focus exclusively on enforcing our broken immigration system, the struggle will shift to ensuring that the federal and state enforcement practices are humane, just, and compassionate. LIRS’ Access to Justice (ATJ) unit works tirelessly to reverse what they call the “dire lack of ‘due process’ in immigration removal proceedings” and pressure the government to avoid detention except in limited cases when the government proves a need to detain. And so it was good news to hear that there has been a favorable U.S. district court ruling that guarantees the right to counsel to a subset of the immigrant population in detention: those with severe mental disabilities. The decision is a small legal step for courts but a huge leap for migrants.

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