Immigrant group wants U.S. Democrats to deliver citizenship for the Caribbean

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NEW YORK, NY–An immigrant advocacy organization calls on the US Senate Majority Leader Chuck Schumer and the Democratic Party to deliver citizenship for the Caribbean and other immigrants this year.

“In defiance of the will of a majority of American voters and at the expense of our nation’s recovery, an unelected bureaucrat is attempting to thwart the 30-year battle for immigrant justice,” said Murad Awawdeh, the executive director of the New York Immigration Coalition (NYIC).

“But we will not be giving up now. We have always known that this was just the beginning of a process. Senate Majority Leader Chuck Schumer must move forward with an alternative approach that ensures that millions of undocumented immigrants can have the lasting protections they deserve,” he added.

Awawdeh, whose organizations represent more than 200 groups in the New York area, said that for decades, millions of young people, Temporary Protected Status (TPS) recipients, such as Haitians, and hard-working families have waited for a pathway to citizenship.

“At stake is not only the fulfillment of dozens of broken promises but the very health and economic recovery of America. The fight is far from over.”

The US enate Parliamentarian, an unelected advisor to the Senate, announced last Saturday that the immigration provisions, precisely a path to citizenship for millions of immigrants, included in the Democrats’ US$3.5 trillion budget reconciliation infrastructure package do not meet the requirements of the Byrd rule.

Overcoming the Senate Parliamentarian’s decision requires a unified 50 vote majority in the Senate.

Immediately, Schumer released a statement announcing that Democrats had prepared alternate proposals and would be going back to the Senate Parliamentarian in the coming days.

NYIC noted that the news comes after months of negotiations and votes on a continuing resolution on the spending plan in both houses of Congress.

“Now, the Senate and the House must vote on the full spending plan,” Awawdeh said, adding that legalizing millions of immigrants will result in an additional US$149 billion in the gross domestic product (GDP) and US$39 billion in federal, state and local taxes.

Throughout September, Awawdeh said NYIC would join its national partners in a series of actions demanding that Congressional Democrats hold firm on their promise to deliver a pathway to citizenship.

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