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If Sarah Ovaska’s story about the absurdity of Time Warner Cable going all Barney Fife on an undocumented woman in Burlington isn’t enough to convince you of the need for real immigration reform in 2013, then check out this new report from the good folks at the Immigration Policy Center.

It’s entitled “Falling through the cracks” and it documents the impact of our nation’s broken immigration system and enhanced deportation policies on millions of innocent kids who find themselves separated (or at risk of becoming separated) from their parents. To quote the report: Read More

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Immigration committee right to back off from harsh recommendations

STATEMENT FROM THE WE ARE NC COALITION

RALEIGH (Dec. 6, 2012) – America needs a just, fair and humane immigration policy that keeps families together. We Are NC is pleased to hear that the House Select Committee on the State’s Role in Immigration Policy has backed off its plans to pursue harsh immigration laws in North Carolina.

The report’s release comes the same week as former President George W. Bush reiterated his support for reforming our broken immigration system; as a bipartisan Illinois state Senate voted in favor of undocumented immigrants’ access to driver licenses; and as House Speaker Thom Tillis stated that he has no interest in a sweeping anti-immigrant bill in North Carolina. While Rep. Harry Warren originally wanted to use this committee to explore harsh and vindictive legislation, like shutting off heat and utilities for undocumented immigrants, today’s report shows that public pressure has convinced the committee to pursue a new path.  Read More

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House Speaker Thom Tillis is sending messages that today’s rollout of a report by the House Select Committee on the State’s Role in Immigration Policy will not be the kind of thing that will please the far right anti-immigrant crowd. Let’s hope that’s the case.

Meanwhile, folks at the We Are NC coalition issued the following statement yesterday afternoon in anticipation of today’s meeting:

“It has been a very eventful year since the Select Committee on the State’s Role in Immigration Policy’s first hearing, where Representative Iler promised to take a “dispassionate” look at immigration in North Carolina with the results to be outlined in a report released tomorrow.

After hearing from government representatives, the committee now knows that undocumented immigrants enjoy no privilege in their status. Read More
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The immigration debate in the United States has seen some modest, incremental progress in recent months — most notably the Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals Program. The Los Angeles Times has a good editorial on this topic over the weekend and we had a post here at The Progressive Pulse last Friday that provides more details for young people who may be eligible.

And then there’s the anti-immigrant crowd. For some time now, two of the noisiest groups in this camp in North Carolina are the groups known as ALIPAC and NC FIRE. Despite giving voice to a lot of incredibly mean-spirited and downright absurd stuff, these groups helped play host recently in Wilmington to a small group of politicians and activists — some of them prominent (Congressman Mike McIntyre) and some of them just narrow-minded and crazy.  You can watch some video of the event by clicking here.

Looks like we still have a ways to go in bridging the gap in this debate.