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Statement by AFL-CIO President Richard Trumka AFL-CIO Working Families Support Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals

Policy to Support the American Dream Has Been Used Since 1971

The AFL-CIO strongly disagrees with the contention of a group of 10 immigration agents that upholding President Obama’s policy toward young, aspiring U.S. citizens who arrived in this country as children is in any way in conflict with the constitution or federal law.  These agents are working with some of the most anti-immigrant forces in the country, forces that have long sowed division and destruction. 

America is a nation of values, founded on an idea that we still cherish -- that all men and women are created equal and all people have rights, no matter what they look like or where they came from. How we treat new immigrants reflects our commitment to the values that define us as Americans.

For too long, conservative politicians have failed our people and our country by blocking the creation of a common-sense immigration process.  Their inaction prompted President Obama to announce a policy to grant deferred action for DREAMers who were brought here as children—a policy that helps all working men and women.

Over 100 of the nation’s top constitutional and immigration law scholars signed on to a letter attesting to the policy’s constitutionality.  Deferred action has been exercised by the Executive Branch since the Nixon Administration.  

America deserves a common sense immigration process, one that includes a roadmap for New Americans who aspire to be citizens. Everyone agrees that the current patchwork of policies and programs is mismanaged and ineffective, and it breaks up families. For those currently striving for citizenship, there’s often no line to get into for becoming a fully participating American.

The labor movement is united in calling on Congress to take action and create a common-sense immigration process – one that reflects our values, keeps families together, supports a secure border and creates a roadmap to citizenship.

Contact: Gonzalo Salvador (202) 637-5018

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