With anti-immigrant state legislation on the rise and 2012 state legislative sessions right around the corner, the question stands of whether what is taking place in Alabama will seep into other state Congresses with the lack of federal action for comprehensive reform.
What has unfolded in Alabama as a result of HB 56 is not only a civil rights issue but also a humanitarian crisis that has affected families for the worse. Approaches like these, will only continue to further harm families who are most vulnerable as a result of our broken immigration system.
“This impractical, punitive approach does nothing to move us closer to immigration reform, but it does undermine our deepest values and creates chaos and fear in our communities,” said Chris Liu-Beers with the North Carolina Council of Churches.
As a faith community who believes in the rule of law but opposes unjust laws that oppress the vulnerable, it is time that we hold our policy makers accountable for the demoralizing pieces of legislation that continue to be developed and enacted.
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Chris Liu-Beers is a graduate of Duke Divinity School and has been working with the NC Council of Churches since 2006. His commitment to immigrant rights, sustainability and social justice has been shaped in part by studying abroad in Jerusalem, Israel and Zacatecas, Mexico. As Program Associate, he works on immigration and farmworker-related advocacy, rural life issues, and the Council’s worship resources.