On the first full day of the immigration reform debate in the U.S. Senate, more than 50 advocates and allies of working families flew to Washington, D.C., to ask members of Congress to support a common sense immigration process that respects workers' rights and includes a road map to citizenship. Community leaders from nearly half the states in the union were in Washington to act as citizen lobbyists. Meanwhile, labor activists in numerous other states visited the offices of members of Congress in their home district to rally support for the bill.
Ana Avendaño, AFL-CIO's director of immigration and community action, said:
It was great to have so many different labor voices from across the country using different words but all advocating for a bill that protects workers' rights and offers a reliable road map to citizenship for aspiring Americans. Immigration in the details can be a complex issue, but it can also be a simple one—families should stay united, workers should stand together against abusive CEOs, and communities should stay intact. Our elected officials heard that theme from working people today all across Capitol Hill, and it resonated. We’re a big step closer to a victory in 2013 that will make it much, much harder for abusive employers to steal their workers’ wages or pit workers against each other.
Senators also were asked to support the approval of five nominations the president has made to the National Labor Relations Board (NLRB). The appointments are necessary to guarantee that the board can continue to function in its vitally important role of protecting worker rights.
Working families advocates also called on their representatives to oppose any benefit cuts to Social Security, including "Chained" CPI.
Here are some of the best tweets from the fly-in day:
"The time is now to create a comprehensive immigration process that protects all workers, including new American... fb.me/2WrWumLul— NC State AFL-CIO (@NCStateAFLCIO) June 12, 2013