George Tarr, African Refuge
Citing the Democratic Party’s majority control in Congress, the New York Immigration Coalition, advocates, New Yorkers, and policy experts called for the Biden administration to keep their promise to restore humanity to the country’s immigration system within the first 100 days in office. In a far-reaching conversation led by the NYIC, speakers delved into the enormous task of undoing President Trump’s broad administrative changes to the immigration system and why success will hinge on swift action by President-elect Biden. As a first step, the NYIC and partners are calling for the incoming President to immediately:
- Rescind the Muslim Ban and other travel bans, and immediately restore the U.S. refugee program.
- Issue an immediate moratorium on all immigration enforcement, including deportations, detentions and arrests.
- Reinstate and expand the Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA) and Temporary Protected Status (TPS) programs.
- Create a broad and expansive road to citizenship for 11 million people.
“In just four years, Trump and Stephen Miller managed to twist the country’s immigration system to fit their divisive, bigoted agenda,” said Murad Awawdeh and Rovika Rajkishun, Interim Co-Executive Directors of the New York Immigration Coalition.
“With a new presidential administration and Democratic majorities in both houses of Congress, now is the time for a fundamental overhaul of the immigration system to create one that recognizes the humanity of all people and that upholds the values of equal justice and due process for all,” said Nyasa Hickey, Director of Immigration Initiatives at Brooklyn Defender Services.
“Ending the repugnant discriminatory immigration policies targeting Muslims and people of color must be realized immediately,” said Afaf Nasher, Executive Director of CAIR-NY. “This requires that President-elect Biden and his administration live up to the promise to repeal the Muslim and African Bans, and work with Congress to adopt the No Ban Act.
“The Democrats’ failure to pass immigration reform when they best had a chance in 2009 has led to a decade of suffering in our communities. Hundreds of thousands of families have been separated, children have been put in cages, and millions are living through a historic pandemic with no support,” said Manuel Castro executive director of New Immigrant Community Empowerment (NICE). “Our community is sick and tired of the excuses and delays when it comes to immigration reform. So, we expect the Biden administration to be ready on day 1 to introduce immigration reform legislation that is inclusive of all immigrants suffering through this pandemic. No arbitrary requirements. No one left out.”