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Orange County Labor Federation

The Time is Now for Comprehensive Immigration Reform

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Anaheim, CA— Today, the Orange County Labor Federation, representing more than 150,000 working men and women and community allies stood alongside national and local union leaders to kick off labor’s local campaign to help pass comprehensive immigration reform that protects immigrant and all American workers.

The commitment to equality and dignity of all workers is why Orange County working families pledge to work with community partners—including faith based coalitions, immigrant rights organizations—to promote citizenship for 11 million immigrant aspiring citizens. The labor federation will be working to adopt a resolution with more than 93 affiliated unions, calling on Congress to pass common-sense immigration reform that includes a practical and inclusive road map to citizenship and reflects core American values such as fairness, equality, and family unity. Orange County Labor will hold congressional delegations, letter writing campaigns to build pressure locally to support the 11 million immigrants to aspiring to become citizens.

California Labor Federation’s, State Exec. Secretary-Treasurer Art Pulaski announced labor’s five key principles for Comprehensive Immigration Reform which include:

1.  An independent commission to assess and manage future flows, based on labor market shortages that are determined on the basis of actual need;
2.  A secure and effective worker authorization mechanism;
3.  Rational operational control of the border;
4.  Adjustment of status for the current undocumented population; and
5.  Improvement, not expansion, of temporary worker programs, limited to temporary or seasonal, not permanent, jobs.

As the debate over immigration reform heats up, supporters and aspiring citizens are optimistic that Congress will work together for real reform. “We need a direct and efficient road map to citizenship that will bring the more than 11 million immigrants from living in the shadows, we need real leadership,” said Yanet Salmeron, member of SEIU-USWW. “The time for immigration reform is now, said Tefere Gebre, Executive Director for the Orange County Labor Federation.  “Employers take advantage of the millions of undocumented workers who endure hazardous working conditions, low wages and exploitation. An inclusive, practical and swift adjustment of status program will raise labor standards for all workers.”