Locals Respond To Immigration Deal

The Colorado Immigrant Rights Coalition (CIRC), representing a state-wide coalition of more than 80 organizations, has released a statement responding to news that U.S. Senate members have come to a compromise on immigration reform.

Some concerns with the deal are the legislation’s family provisions and the lack of opportunity for guestworkers to become citizens. From the release:

First, the architecture of the deal includes appalling provisions driven by Republican Senators that would fundamentally undo the family immigration system created in 1965. This deal would replace that system with a “rich man’s immigration system” that would shift preferences to high-skilled, English speaking people, and deny American citizens and immigrants the opportunity to bring loved family members into this nation. This is a violation of real family values, and destroys a fundamental, longstanding principle of American immigration policy.  The Senators should recognize that many of them would not be in this country under the immigration system they are proposing.

Second, the deal would not allow for a path to citizenship for future ‘guestworkers,’ thereby creating a two-tier labor market that could undermine worker protections for all Americans.  Such an approach would recreate problems of the disastrous bracero program, depress wages and working conditions for U.S. workers, and would be fundamentally inconsistent with American values of fair play and equal treatment.

CIRC also says that such problems must be fixed before real comprehensive reform is accomplished.

Erin Rosa was born in Spain and raised in Colorado Springs. She is a freelance writer currently living in Denver. Rosa's work has been featured in a variety of news outlets including the Huffington Post, Democracy Now!, and the Rocky Mountain Chronicle, an alternative-weekly in Northern Colorado where she worked as a columnist covering the state legislature. Rosa has received awards from the Society of Professional Journalists for her reporting on lobbying and woman's health issues. She was also tapped with a rare honorable mention award by the Newspaper Guild-CWA's David S. Barr Award in 2008--only the second such honor conferred in its nine-year history--for her investigative series covering the federal government's Supermax prison in the state. Rosa covers the labor community, corrections, immigration and government transparency matters. She can be reached at erosa@www.coloradoindependent.com.

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