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Migrant Lives Matter

Gloria M. Sandoval  |  Issue: September 2014

A new campaign by the Immigrant Youth Coalition, “Migrant Lives Matter” directs attention to the Democratic Party and its Deporter-in-Chief President Obama for its passive actions regarding immigration reform. Under the Democrats watch, immigrants have been massively incarcerated, deported, and too many have died as a result of this inaction. Voicing that our communities have been taken for granted and have been used by politicians for their own political gain, the Coalition has served Democrat legislators with four demands:

  1. Advocate vigorously and publicly for the expansion of Administrative Relief to protect all undocumented immigrants and advocate in this manner for an immediate end to all deportations and the immediate release of all detained immigrants.
  2. Defeat, by any means at your disposal, the HUMANE Act (see below) and any and all other requests for funding that would further militarize the border, expand detention centers, and immigration enforcement.
  3. Grant Refugee Status to all who are seeking asylum, including refugee children and families arriving at the US-Mexico border.
  4. Extend existing protections to ensure that all refugee children and families can receive refugee status, including Mexican and Canadian citizens who are currently excluded.

The ‘HUMANE” (Helping Unaccompanied Minors & Alleviating National Emergency) Act, introduced by Congressman Henry Cuellar, Democrat from Laredo, Texas and Texas Senator John Cornyn, Republican, would result in weakening of a 2008 law signed by Bush that protects Central American children. This change would “equal” the immediate removal process such as it applies to Mexican and Canadian citizens. HUMANE Act includes use of a biometric exit system and upgrading of technology along the southern border; including expansion of Border Patrol agents and authorizes operation of the National Guard units.

The “Migrant Lives Matter” campaign is one of the many actions that have been taken: Vigils, pilgrimages, hunger fasts, civil disobedience, prayer, massive protests, resolutions of support, regional and national conference calls, including other campaigns There is a crisis and we must side with all immigrants since they are refugees fleeing dangerous environments in their countries. We must listen to their stories and help with their protection and to reunite families. All elected leaders in the U.S. and in Central America must be held responsible for their safety.

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