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Miami-Dade Commissioner to Vote on Resolution for Immigration Reform

MEDIA ADVISORY: Wednesday, February 20th at 11:00 a.m.

MIAMI-DADE COMMISSIONERS VOTE ON RESOLUTION URGING CONGRESS TO MODERNIZE THE IMMIGRATION SYSTEM

Miami residents welcome the initiative and ask Commissioners to put families first instead of more tough and expensive enforcement of immigration laws

WHAT:             Press Conference before Commission Hearing

WHERE:           Stephen P. Clark Government Center – 111 NW 1st Street

WHEN:            Wednesday, February 20th. Press Conference at 11:00 a.m. / Commission Hearing time TBA

Miami, FL – Miami-Dade Commissioners were expected to vote today on a Resolution that urges the United States Congress to modernize the immigration system, and expands on the Senate bipartisan framework presented by Senator Marco Rubio and others on January 28th. The vote has been deferred until further notice.

Dozens of Miami residents will participate in the Commission Hearing as part of the “Say Yes” campaign to welcome the initiative but urge Commissioners to prioritize keeping families together instead of more hard and expensive enforcement of immigration laws that have already separated thousands of families through unnecessary detentions and deportations.

“We are glad our County leaders support the much needed modernization of our immigration system. But, we worry that the resolution continues to reinforce Senator Rubio’s idea that more enforcement should come before immigrants receive a real opportunity to start their path to citizenship,” says Kathy Bird, Campaign Lead for the Florida Immigrant Coalition. “We have suffered for decades the tough hand of enforcement with constant raids in areas like Homestead and racial profiling checkpoints everywhere; we don’t need more of that. Our Commissioners should Say Yes to our families first, and Say Yes to a real path to citizenship.”

Community organizations will remind Commissioners that Florida’s economy relies on thousands of workers in the fields, building houses or serving costumers and tourists in the hotels, restaurants and attractions. Even though they are currently under-paid, it doesn’t mean they are low-skilled workers, and the Resolution should recognize their critical contribution.

“Too often we confuse the amount of money that we pay our workers with their true economic and civic potential ,” says Gihan Perera, Florida New Majority Executive Director. “Our nation’s immigrants, in a variety of fields and professions, provide critical contributions, not just on the job, but in their churches, their schools and in the lives of other members of their communities.”

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The Say Yes campaign is composed by community and immigrant rights organizations working for a new and better immigration system with a real, reasonable and just path to citizenship that works equally  for all Floridians.