LULAC Applauds Gang of Eight’s Consensus Leading to Swift Immigration Reform

May 22, 2013

Contact: Paloma Zuleta, 202-833-6130, PZuleta (at) LULAC . org

Washington, D.C. - The League of United Latin American Citizens (LULAC) commends the Gang of Eight for its bi-partisan efforts to build an effective and practical immigration system that will reflect the best of America's values and the will of the American people.

LULAC is especially pleased with the brevity in which the bi-partisan group has come to agreement on immigration reform, taking into considerations the many concerns brought up from both sides of the halls.

While LULAC understands the need for give and take, LULAC was disappointed that same-sex couples may still not be included in the immigration reform bill, as well as the many residents from all corners of the world who entered after May 2011.

“In the land of opportunity, where everyone is entitled to build their own American Dream, it’s discouraging that we exclude so many immigrants from the newest pathway to citizenship,” said LULAC National President Margaret Moran. “We realize it’s difficult to put a date on eligibility, but believe we must be as inclusive as possible, rather than exclusive, especially since fixing our immigration system was decades overdue.”

Additionally, LULAC is concerned about provisions that exclude people earning limited incomes. The latest iteration of the bill requires immigrants to have incomes at or above 125 percent of the poverty level.

“Our country has historically underpaid undocumented workers, so to penalize them for earning less than their documented counterparts, by withholding citizenship eligibility is a double edged sword to the hard working immigrants,” Moran continued.”

LULAC has been convening with members of the Gang of Eight throughout the process to provide feedback and convey priorities as they may affect the Latino community, in particular. While the proposed bill is not what LULAC would have drafted, it reflects the start of a long process in line with LULAC’s principles of pathway to citizenship, visa reform, LGBT and employee rights, and a just and fair border security program.

LULAC has continuously worked to advance equal justice for all immigrants and citizens. LULAC has a rich history of advocacy in civil rights, economic development, immigration and equal opportunity.

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About LULAC
The League of United Latin American Citizens (LULAC) is the nation’s largest and oldest civil rights volunteer-based organization that empowers Hispanic Americans and builds strong Latino communities. Headquartered in Washington, DC, with 900 councils around the United States and Puerto Rico, LULAC’s programs, services and advocacy address the most important issues for Latinos, meeting critical needs of today and the future. For more information, visit www.LULAC.org

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