By Richard Gomez
President Barack Obama has expanded and enforced the Secure Communities (S-Comm) program by allowing local law enforcement to act as immigration agents, ensuring a negative effect on immigrant communities, like the Central Valley, that tears families apart while doing nothing to deal with the complicated issue of immigration. Policies from both Democrats and Republicans continue to endanger individuals and families from Mexico and Central America who come here out of personal and financial desperation due to “free market” policies. Only the Green Party believes that immigration policies should be strongly based on human rights.
The most effective tool would be the creation of an international labor union establishing enforceable policies including living wages, good working conditions, health benefits, disability insurance and workers’ compensation benefits. Properly devised immigrant work policies can be of economic benefit to the workers and the host nation. Immigration reform should be directed toward a good, just and true policy.
The Green Party supports
- International borders that should be recognized as areas of bi-national interdependence. International border areas should be authentic fair trade zones where people are free to travel across borders for work, shopping or recreation.
- The right to receive medical care, education, housing and access to all available public benefits and services.
- Legalization programs to provide immigrants with the ability to obtain permanent residency status.
- A reduction of the private and public militarization of the U.S.-Mexican border and protection against intimidation by public officials or private individuals.
The legalization time line should be fair, simplified, transparent, affordable and attainable within five years after entry. Immediate and full legalization should be offered for all immigrants and their families currently residing in the United States.
Enforcement of immigration laws is the responsibility of the federal Immigration and Customs Enforcement Agency (ICE). All immigrants should have
- The right to be secure in their houses and protected against unreasonable search and seizure and to be protected against arbitrary arrest or detention based on racial or cultural profiling.
- Interpreters available in emergency rooms, hospitals and healthcare clinics.
Policies that restore and guarantee the civil rights provided for under the Constitution of the United States, which specifically states that the rights apply to all persons residing in the United States, must apply to all races and ethnicities equally.
President Obama has increased deportations to more than at any time in American history. And the Republican Party promises to do much worse to people who are trying to live in an economically unjust world. The Green Party believes that building trust with respect to our neighbors will build good, just and true friends and that building walls will never stop illegal immigration.
For complete information about the California Green Party’s policy on immigration, visit www.cagreens.org/platform/platform_toc.shtml.
The Green Party meets at the State Building in downtown Fresno on the second Thursday of the month at 7 p.m.
Richard Gomez is a council member of the Fresno County Green Party. Contact him at 559-408-3320 or firstname.lastname@example.org.