A couple of positive steps forward

6 Jun

Last week, we saw some positive immigrant policies move forward.  New York Governor Cuomo announced that the state will withdraw its participation in Secure Communities, the

NY Gov Andrew Cuomo opts out of SCOMM

Photo by: NY1 News

flawed federal enforcement program that has been critiqued by several immigrant rights advocates. New York is now the second state that joins Illinois in suspending its participation. Last week, California also moved a step closer by approving to let counties opt-out of the federal program while other states like Maryland and Massachusetts investigate further to see if they will also opt-out.

In another positive step, the Illinois House passed its version of the DREAM Act that will establish a private fund for undocumented students who are seeking scholarships that will help finance their education. While this is a watered-down version that does not provide a path to citizenship, it’s a step in the positive direction.

This is great momentum to build on. Other states should consider withdrawing from the Secure Communities program and pushing for DREAM Act legislation that will not only help students fund their education but also carve out a pathway to obtain documentation. These are two examples of what we can do in each of our states while we push for immigration reform at the national level.

Related news …some of which is not so positive
A crackdown on employing [undocumented] workers, New York Times, May 29, 2011
The Obama administration is tightening its scrutiny over employers who hire undocumented workers.

More than immigration at stake in historic effort to recall Arizona’s Pearce, New America Media, May 31, 2011
Arizona immigrant advocates organize a bipartisan effort to recall Senator Russell Pearce, who is known for his tough stance against immigration. While only 7,756 signatures are required, activists collected over 18,000 signatures – more than the 17,553 votes Pearce received to get him in office.

Georgia: Suit Challenges Immigration Law, New York Times, June 2, 2011
Civil right groups file a lawsuit against Georgia’s anti-immigration law that lets police ask about immigration status and requires everyone to carry documentation to prove legal status.

In Alabama, a Harsh bill for Resident here Illegally, New York Times, June 3, 2011
The bill allows the police to arrest drivers for traffic violations if there is a “reasonable suspicion” that they are undocumented. The bill also requires public schools to check the status of all children in public schools and bans undocumented residents from attending schools of higher education.

Advertisements

One Response to “A couple of positive steps forward”

Trackbacks/Pingbacks

  1. Southern Inhospitality: Alabama HB 56 « The Curious Ostrich - June 14, 2011

    […] than enough to contribute to social welfare programs that would raise everyone’s quality of life. As we saw last week, there are many state legislators who are working to make this a reality. There needs to be two […]

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s