CONTACT: Value Our Families, 202.787.1813 Natali@mateaGroup.com
Washington, DC - Value Our Families, a national coalition of organizations seeking to strengthen the U.S. family-based immigration system, issues the following statements in response to President Trump's senior adviser Jared Kushner’s intention to overhaul the U.S. immigration system towards an agenda rooted in white nationalism that tears families apart. Kushner’s plan would replace our family reunification visa system and diversity visa program with an arbitrary points based system favoring the wealthy.
Megan Essaheb, Director of Immigration Advocacy, Asian Americans Advancing Justice: “We reject Trump’s attempt to whitewash his administration’s cruel policies - stripping immigrants of due process rights, instilling fear in communities, violently separating children from their families and using dehumanizing rhetoric - with his anti-family immigration proposal. We should continue to prioritize family and humanitarian values and continue to offer opportunities to those seeking refuge from violence, persecution or poverty. Families lift each other up. Indeed, yesterday’s struggling dad is today’s successful chef, builder, scientist, or restaurant owner. And for each success story there are many more caregivers and workers who made their success possible. There are so many examples of immigrants who have uplifted neighborhoods throughout our nation thanks to our tradition of family-based visas. We cannot let Trump destroy America’s soul.”
Sam Yu, Communications Coordinator, NAKASEC: “As a result of family-based immigration, my grandmother was able to come to the U.S. and stay home with me and my sisters while my parents worked at their small business, morning to night, six days a week. My grandmother ensured that we went to school prepared and were healthy and safe. The kind of points-based system that is being considered would have excluded women like my grandmother. We need a stronger family-based immigration system through the Reuniting Families Act that supports keeping families together and small businesses, not a system that will ultimately favor wealthy men."
Alvina Yeh, Executive Director of the Asian Pacific American Labor Alliance, AFL-CIO: “This plan does nothing to address the crisis of families being separated and children being locked up. It addresses none of the continuing anti-Blackness and islamophobia we've seen from this administration. It does nothing to uplift working people and their families who are the backbone of our country and our economy. This points-based immigration plan would only exacerbate the exploitation of immigrant workers on employment visas, who already face hostile working conditions.”
Reverend John L. McCullough, President and CEO of Church World Service: “This plan is a monstrosity that lacks moral clarity and is an affront to our nation’s values of family unity and welcome. The administration’s plan is little more than a thinly veiled attempt to limit immigration to the privileged and wealthy - in effect closing our borders to all except those who the president and his cabinet prefer. The U.S. immigration system should be rooted in compassion, not in cold partiality. We must do more as families are being torn apart and lives are at stake.”
Angelica Salas, Executive Director of the Coalition for Humane Immigrant Rights (CHIRLA): “The Trump administration’s capacity to disregard common-sense immigration policies continues to amaze us. From its founding, this nation has honored and welcomed the contributions of all who seek a better life for themselves and their families. Only now is this cynical administration with eyes only for the white and wealthy choosing to exchange those values for a wealth-based system. It should not and will not happen.”
Sameera Hafiz, Policy Director of the Immigrant Legal Resource Center: “As the Trump administration continues doubling down on their racist immigration policy agenda, including beginning implementation of the new public charge rule and the expansion of the Muslim ban, there is no question that this new proposal is simply the latest part of the Trump administration’s coordinated and racist effort to limit immigration to the wealthy and white. Family builds resilience and is a core human value, as reflected in the idea of family-based immigration - the heart of the American immigration system. We call on Congress to support the Reuniting Families Act so that all who come here are given a fair opportunity to succeed and contribute their talents alongside their loved ones.”
Value Our Families is a national coalition of organizations seeking to strengthen the U.S. family-based immigration system. Visit: ValueOurFamilies.org