People are angry and disappointed that there hasn’t been significant change in immigration policy and this frustration was clear in people’s voices, signs and calls for reform at the convention. But more powerful was the general sense of urgency for the need to take action and the determination for change. That’s why more than 700 Texans came together in Austin to rally on Saturday for comprehensive immigration reform (CIR). Hundreds signed onto a letter urging President Obama to use his leadership and work with Congress to pass CIR that would unify families, respect civil liberties and human rights, and end the raids & deportations. The goal is to get 50,000 signatures on the letter, which will be delivered to the White House during the immigration reform march that’s being put together by RI4A.
Families testified about the unjust separation of families due to deportation & detention. Community organizations and advocates voiced their concerns about the erosion of due process, workers’ rights and basic human rights in the current immigration system. Police officers discussed the troubling 287(g) program and why they have refused to take part. Students spoke out the lack of affordability and access to higher education for undocumented immigrants. Keynote speaker, Ali Noorani, put the fight for immigration reform in a national context:
About 100 community members from the Valley attended the event as part of the Equal Voice Network, a coalition of groups working for immigration reform, along with housing, economic, education & worker justice:
The message from Texas is clear:
COMPREHENSIVE IMMIGRATION REFORM NOW! It’s good for the economy, good for security and good for families!