Thousands Rally Demanding Comprehensive Immigration Reform, Groups Call for Sustained Actions to Achieve Dignity and Justice for Immigrants


April 10, 2013

Reference: Bea Sabino, Chairperson, Anakbayan NJ

       ; 201.779.6886

Thousands Rally Demanding Comprehensive Immigration Reform, Groups Call for Sustained Actions to Achieve Dignity and Justice for Immigrants

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Jersey City, NJ- Anakbayan New Jersey, American Friends Service Committee (AFSC) and Action 21 marched with other community organizations, union members, church groups and families who gathered by the thousands at Liberty State Park on April 6.

People from across New Jersey mobilized to demand the immediate passage of a Comprehensive Immigration Reform (CIR) bill. They carried signs saying, “We are not invisible. We are immigrants” and “NJ Demands Fair Reform,” while shouting, “The time is now for immigration reform!” U.S. legislators are expected to release a CIR proposal upon their return from Spring Recess this week.

According to Anakbayan, the inefficient, inhumane, profit-oriented character of the U.S. immigration system has been exposed throughout the years. In addition to the estimated 12 million undocumented immigrants in the U.S. with no path to legalization, millions more are held up in the limbo of decades-long backlogs in visa processing for family and work-based petitions. Moreover, U.S. taxpayers spend an average of $2 billion a year on detaining immigrants in private prisons contracted by the government in its crusade to eliminate the undocumented.

“Ideally, the CIR proposal should address pressing issues such as separation of families, human trafficking and modern day slavery. It should also recognize the global system that perpetuates poor living conditions in developing nations, which lead to the influx of migrant workers to the US,” said Bea Sabino, Chairperson of Anakbayan NJ.

“We aim to promote migrant people’s narratives, and continue to organize the immigrant community in order to sustain the people’s movement for genuine immigration reform. We demand a realistic path to legalization for all migrants, just and fair working conditions, equal access to education regardless of immigration status, and an end to criminalization and illegalization of immigrants,” concluded Sabino.

Anakbayan NJ and its allied organizations urge the community to participate in the conversation about CIR and take an active role in holding elected officials accountable to upholding the rights of immigrants at the local, state and national level.

CIR is long overdue. Panahon Na (The Time is Now)! A Community Forum on Comprehensive Immigration Reform” is taking place on Sunday, April 21, 3-5pm at Pope Hall, St. Peter’s University, 115 Glenwood Avenue, Jersey City, NJ 07306.

Everyone is invited to listen to stories of immigrants from different backgrounds who are coming out of the shadows to fight for immigrant rights. The forum will also discuss how immigration reform will affect the community and how individuals can get involved in making history happen.

For more information on how to take part in the campaign for Comprehensive Immigration Reform in Jersey City, contact Anakbayan NJ at ###

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