ACLU Comment on House Immigration Reform Proposal


WASHINGTON – Below is a statement from Laura W. Murphy, director of the American Civil Liberties Union’s Washington Legislative Office, on the introduction of a comprehensive immigration reform bill in the U.S. House of Representatives today.

“This bill is an admirable attempt to shake Congress free from its immigration logjam. Though mired in a fiscal stalemate, Congress cannot abdicate its duty to fix a broken immigration system that needlessly punishes aspiring citizens and their families. The ACLU will continue to work to make civil liberties improvements to whatever emerges from each chamber before final legislation heads to President Obama’s desk.”

Below is a statement from Vicki B. Gaubeca, director of the ACLU of New Mexico’s Regional Center for Border Rights, on the border provisions in this bill.

“Simply stated, the House bill’s border provisions are an improvement over the Senate bill’s. Whereas the Senate provisions are based on no concrete analysis of actual security needs, the House bill takes a more methodical approach, assessing border security needs before any resources are committed. This is the way sensible border policy should be crafted, horse before the cart.

“That being said, though things like ‘studying border needs’, ‘oversight’, and ‘accountability’, may not sound sexy, they are critical components to ensuring that the civil and human rights of border communities are protected, and the House bill still needs improvement in those areas. This is especially true given Customs and Border Protection’s massive increase in abuses and killings in the past several years.”

Below is a statement from Homayra Yusufi-Marin, policy advocate of the ACLU of San Diego & Imperial Counties.

“The San Diego ACLU is heartened by a renewal of the push for commonsense comprehensive immigration reform. We particularly endorse the vital element of an inclusive roadmap to citizenship that this new proposal reinstates, and the rejection of the unnecessary and expensive border surge provisions added to previous iterations. The House had been contemplating a piecemeal approach that likely would doom the roadmap to citizenship, and instead focus almost exclusively on wasteful spending to secure borders that are already secure. Bringing 11 million aspiring citizens out of the shadows would not only advance public safety, it would improve our economy.

The ACLU has committed its resources to a long-term struggle to ensure equal rights for our border communities.“

Read the ACLU of California’s Issue Sheet on Comprehensive Immigration Reform.