Migrante International joins millions of im/migrants in the United States in welcoming Pres. Barrack Obama’s recent Executive Action on Immigration. The decision is a direct result of the collective action and unity of US-based im/immigrants of different nationalities against the regime’s stringent immigration rules criminalizing undocumented im/migrants in the country.
Indeed, Obama’s Executive Action is an initial victory for the im/migrant movement in the US and around the world, but we must remain vigilant. It is a start but it is not enough.
The Executive Action for Immigration is selective at best. It only provides tactical relief to a specific group of im/migrants in the US – those who have been residing there for more than five years, those with children who are American citizens, those who pass a criminal background check and those who are willing to ‘pay their fare share of taxes’. While these are positive developments for those who will fit into the criteria, we remain wary of how the Obama government plans to implement the action.
What of the millions more who do not fit into the criteria? Will the Obama government continue to criminalize them?
Migrante International asserts the demand for “Legalization for All” – regardless of duration of stay, affiliation or economic circumstance. No human is illegal. Being undocumented is never reason to be stripped of one’s fundamental human rights. Undocumented im/migrants, who inevitably provide solutions to labor shortages or the clamor for cheap labor in host countries, especially in times of economic crisis, should not be marginalized and exploited. They are already less able to assert their claims and are more vulnerable to abuses. They contribute greatly to the economies of their host countries through their labor force, cultural exchange, economic consumption and the taxes they pay through their bills, utilities and purchases.
The Executive Action is also temporary and will only be implemented for certain period of time by 2015. This is reason enough for the im/migrant movement in the US and elsewhere in the world to continue fighting for the rights and welfare of the undocumented, for countries to recognize their contributions to economies as im/migrants, workers, members of society and human beings. ###
End Deportations Now!
Family Reunification Now!
End the criminalization of im/migrants!
End the Philippine Labor Export Policy!
Genuine Immigration Reform Now!
LEGALIZATION FOR ALL!