DEPORTATION-ONLY PROPOSALS ARE NOT “REAL” SOLUTIONSPublished: Jul 8, 2008 By: AILA Source: My Source
DEPORTATION-ONLY PROPOSALS ARE NOT “REAL” SOLUTIONS
For the past twenty years, this country has been steadily increasing immigration enforcement at the border and in the interior, and the effort has not only failed, but backfired. Throwing more money at the border has not ended undocumented immigration but only increased it.
• Americans are pragmatic and overwhelmingly reject the notion that we can or should deport 12 million people- Americans know that immigrants contribute to our society and they want a longterm solution.
• None of the deportation-only proposals currently being pushed forward in Congress would address the reason that immigrants come here without documents or overstay their visas. The real reason that people migrate illegally is the enormous disconnect between the broad availability of jobs and the absence of legal channels enabling immigrants to come fill those jobs.
• On top of the fact that there are few legal channels available for migration, there is a lack of any safety valve in our current law to allow employers and family members to petition for most undocumented individuals impacted by raids, detention and deportation.
Congress is feeling intense pressure to just do something on immigration:
• Congress must refrain from acting just to act, especially when the measures on the table will do far more harm than good and serve no purpose other than to score political points with vocal immigration restrictionists who will never be satisfied.
• Currently, some Members are pushing Congressional leaders to take a vote on the SAVE Act (H.R. 4088/ S. 2368), introduced by Reps. Heath Shuler (D-NC), Brian Bilbray (R-CA), and Tom Tancredo (R-CO) in the House. The “SAVE Act” is an immigration deportation-only package that would mandate the use of the error-ridden Basic Pilot electronic employment verification system for everyone- including U.S. citizens. The proposed systems are based on deeply flawed databases
containing erroneous or outdated information on individuals, resulting in an unacceptably high number of false positive "hits.”
• Far from a silver bullet, mandates along the lines proposed will lead to erroneous firings, discrimination by employers, and exploitation of millions of workers, including U.S. citizens and legal immigrants ensnared by the system's errors and lack of safeguards.
• Layering mandatory electronic employment verification on our economy at this time will cause more dislocation in our economy and our communities, not less. We need long-term solutions and in the interim, we should do no harm:
• Only through a realistic, long-term solution for the undocumented population living in the U.S., and targeted, effective enforcement of realistic laws will we gain control over our immigration system.
• In the interim, we should strenuously avoid half-baked measures that will do lasting damage to our country such as the SAVE Act.
• We should enact a short-term package that provides immediate relief to businesses and communities that currently have no safety valve to allow deserving immigrants to remain in our country. Judges and agency officials should be given the discretion to evaluate the facts of each individual case.
Published by the AMERICAN IMMIGRATION LAWYERS ASSOCIATION
1331 G Street, NW Washington, DC 20005
Phone: (202) 507-7600 Fax: (202) 783-7853