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Integrating Immigrants into Our Communities

Migrants Give More than They Take, Says UN

Published on Monday, October 5, 2009 by Inter Press Service

Session Roundups and Anti-immigrant Legislators Largely Marginalized

While immigration continued to be debated in states across the country this session, most anti-immigrant bills were defeated and more positive approaches to new immigrants were debated.  Even in sessions dominated by budget crises, positive policies were enacted in many states.

Dreaming of a Better Tomorrow: In-State Tuition at the Forefront

States across the country are proposing in-state college tuition rates for undocumented students, a move mirrored by Congress' proposed  DREAM Act, which was re-introduced at the federal level on March 25th. Currently ten states allow undocumented immigrants to enroll in state colleges and universities under the cheaper in-state tuition rate category: California, Illinois, Kansas, Nebraska, New Mexico, New York, Oklahoma, Texas, Utah, and Washington.  In recent years, anti-immigrant legislators sought to modify or repeal laws providing access to in-state tuition for undocumented immigrants, though they've failed each time.  This session, those efforts failed again in Utah and Nebraska. Kansas didn't even bring up repealing it.

Eye on the Right: State Legislators for Legal Immigration and Immigration Law Reform Institute

The FAIR-backed group State Legislators for Legal Immigration was formed by Pennsylvania Rep. Darryl Metcalfe in 2007 with members in 25 states.  Modeled on the conservative Congressional House Immigration Reform Caucus (HIRC), SLLI finished the 2008 election almost exactly where it was at the end of the 2006 election — as a major obstruction to progressive immigration reform.

Eye on the Right: State Legislators for Legal Immigration and Immigration Law Reform Institute

The FAIR-backed group State Legislators for Legal Immigration was formed by Pennsylvania Rep. Darryl Metcalfe in 2007 with members in 25 states.  Modeled on the conservative Congressional House Immigration Reform Caucus (HIRC), SLLI finished the 2008 election almost exactly where it was at the end of the 2006 election — as a major obstruction to progressive immigration reform.

Progressive States Network applauds Labor Department's new priorities to protect all workers

NEW YORK — The Progressive States Network, a national network of state legislators and advocates, is in full support of Labor Secretary Hilda Solis’ new priorities for the department. In her remarks yesterday at a press conference with New Jersey Governor Jon Corzine, Solis reiterated her commitment to ensure basic protections for all workers, native and immigrant alike.

Solis has committed the Labor Department to investigating wage and hour law violations by employers and health and safety concerns. This much needed policy will help address the pervasive problems of the underground economy by preventing unscrupulous employers from threatening and exploiting undocumented workers, thus maintaining higher labor standards for all.