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Resolutions & Amendments

42nd International Convention - Las Vegas, NV (2016)

Immigration Reform

Resolution No. 24
42nd International Convention
Las Vegas Convention Center
July 18 - 22, 2016
Las Vegas, NV


President Obama's executive actions issued on November 20, 2014 granting a temporary reprieve from deportation and the ability to work lawfully to five million undocumented immigrants through an expansion of the Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA) program and a new Deferred Action for Parental Accountability (DAPA) program was blocked after a June 23, 2016

U.S. Supreme Court decision. This was despite the success of the continuing 2012 DACA

initiative and widespread support for the programs' positive economic benefits; and


The majority of unaccompanied minors, many under the age of 12, are making a dangerous journey from Central America to the United States to flee pervasive violence. Because the Department of Justice is fast tracking cases through "rocket dockets," thousands of these children receive deportation orders without having a day in court despite the fact that many of them would qualify for relief from deportation; and


U.S. workers are training and then being replaced by lower-paid foreign workers with fewer employment rights and protections under the H-lB employment visa program, which has led in many instances to jobs being outsourced to contractors who rely on these guest workers; and


The parents of dependent children who legally reside in the U.S. are eligible for the child care tax credit without regard to the citizenship or documented status of the parent. This policy is designed to benefit children so that they do not fall into poverty. The eligibility for the tax credit is based on the documented status of the child, not of the parent; and


There are nearly nine million legal permanent residents eligible for naturalization, but who have not taken this final step towards full participation in our society. The barriers to naturalization are significant—from building public and community-based infrastructure to help immigrants

navigate a complicated process to helping newly naturalized immigrants register to vote and more completely integrate into the social, economic and civic fabric of our communities; and


Congress has not passed comprehensive immigration reform with a pathway to citizenship and full employment protections for all workers in our country.


That AFSCME urges the President and Congress to work together to achieve and expand upon the objectives of the DAPA and DACA programs and, if that fails, AFSCME urges the next President to consider lawful executive action after appointment of a ninth Supreme Court Justice; and


That AFSCME opposes the detention and deportation of Central American unaccompanied minors and families if they have not been given full due process rights, including the right to counsel, before a ruling is rendered on their asylum or refugee claims; and


That the H-lB employment visa program be reformed, not expanded, to protect the employment rights of both U.S. and foreign workers; and


That parents of dependent children who have documented status should continue to be eligible to receive the refundable child tax credit; and


That AFSCME supports efforts that foster rapid integration of immigrants into the economic and civic life of this country to build a stronger and more prosperous democracy. Citizenship is an untapped engine for economic opportunity and promotion of social cohesion; and


That AFSCME renews our call for comprehensive reform that provides a path to citizenship and real protections for workers, keeps families together, and requires balanced and humane immigration law enforcement. We will continue to support all workers, regardless of status, to ensure that their voices are heard and their rights are protected. We will continue to oppose

legislation limited only to immigration enforcement. Working together, we know that we will ultimately achieve a more just immigration system that promotes shared prosperity and respects the dignity of all workers.


SUBMITTED BY: Eddie Rodriguez, President and Delegate

Walthene Primus, Secretary and Delegate

AFSCME District Council 37

New York