Washington, DC - As the dust settles after a hard fought campaign, the American Immigration Lawyers Association (AILA) calls on President Obama to fulfill his promise and move forward on legislation that will improve the economy and build on America's history as a nation of immigrants. Our nation's patchwork of immigration policies and procedures needs an overhaul to offer aspiring Americans a chance to make a better life for their families, and to ensure that the economy benefits fully from the contributions of new and aspiring Americans.
Earlier this year, through the Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals initiative, President Obama offered young immigrants a chance to come out of the shadows on a temporary basis and build a better future for themselves through school and hard work. However, this initiative was always intended to be a stop-gap measure and our country desperately needs a real, permanent solution.
"We know that there are conflicting priorities and many challenges facing our nation. However, bipartisan immigration reform is not just another issue or cause. These are real people who are faced with a process that is beyond broken, made up of outdated regulations and nonsensical policies. President Obama, we ask that you offer a roadmap for new Americans that reflects our country's values and interests, and the spirit with which our nation was built," said AILA President Laura Lichter.
In his victory speech, President Obama said he wanted to keep the promise of our nation's founders, "The idea that if you're willing to work hard, it doesn't matter who you are or where you come from or what you look like or where you love. It doesn't matter whether you're black or white or Hispanic or Asian or Native American or young or old or rich or poor, able, disabled, gay or straight, you can make it here in America if you're willing to try." AILA and its nearly 12,000 members look forward to the day that immigration reform is enacted and that promise is fulfilled.