Brooklyn , N.Y. – Congresswoman Yvette D. Clarke and Congressman Hakeem Jeffries held a press conference today with other elected officials and organizations that work on behalf of immigrants in our community to laud President Barack Obama’s executive order that will allow about four million undocumented Americans to come out from the shadows, register, obtain work authorization and avoid deportation proceedings after completing a criminal check and paying taxes.
In addition, President Obama has promised to end “Secure Communities,” a program under which millions of people were reported to U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement for minor offenses such as traffic tickets. Congresswoman Clarke and Congressman Jeffries are co-chairs of the Congressional Black Caucus Immigration Reform Task Force.
“I commend President Obama for his decision to protect millions of ‘blended’ American families at a time when Republican leaders in Congress have refused to even discuss the comprehensive immigration reform that our nation desperately needs. Now millions of people will not have to fear that a knock on the door in the middle of the night or a raid at the place of their employment will result in the forcible separation of their family. This program will allow people who are already a part of our community to expand their participation in our society. Congressman Jeffries and I are dedicated to assisting those who are eligible for the program to complete its requirements and to enacting a policy of immigration reform that finally resolves the legal status of millions of immigrants and allows the people of the United States to enter the Twenty-First Century,” said Congresswoman Clarke who serves on the House Homeland Security oversight committee.
“President Obama’s executive action on immigration is bold, lawful and compassionate. It will bring tens of thousands of undocumented immigrants in New York City into the mainstream economy, focus on the deportation of felons and not families and encourage the pursuit of the American Dream. House Republicans have chosen to ignore our broken immigration system, in the process leaving millions of immigrant families fractured and twisting in the wind. The President had to act, and in doing so has taken a substantial step forward toward an immigration system that is fair and just.”
The elected officials in attendance included State Senator Kevin Parker, Assemblyman N. Nick Perry, Assemblyman Walter Mosley, Assemblywoman Latrice Walker, Assemblywoman-Elect Rodneyse Bichotte, Assemblywoman-Elect Jo Anne Simon, and Council Member Mathieu Eugene, as well as representatives of the Black Institute, the Council of Peoples Organization, the Haitian American Community Coalition, Churches United to Save and Heal, the Black Alliance for Just Immigration, and members of the community of faith.
U.S. Representative Yvette D. Clarke is a member of the House Committee on Small Business, Ethics, and Homeland Security, where she is the Ranking Member of the Subcommittee on Cybersecurity, Infrastructure Protection, and Security Technologies. She represents many neighborhoods in central and southern Brooklyn, NY which include Brownsville, Crown Heights, East Flatbush, Flatbush, Gerritsen Beach, Madison, Midwood, parts of Park Slope and Flatlands, Prospect Heights, Prospect-Lefferts Gardens, Sheepshead Bay, and Windsor Terrace.