Twelve bills from the House of Delegates have made it into the State Senate, there is a good chance we can stop all of these bills in committee if we put enough pressure on Senators.
PLEASE CALL YOUR STATE SENATOR AS SOON AS POSSIBLE, the committee will be meeting this week, they need to hear from you! Also feel free to contact members of the senate subcommittee on immigration and let them know what you think (even if they aren’t your senator):
Senator John Edwards (804) 698-7521
Senator Dick Saslaw (804) 698-7535
Senator Louise Lucas (804) 698-7518
Senator Fred Quayle (804) 698-7513
Here is a list of phone numbers for all of the state senators, if you don’t know who your state senator is please follow this link, and feel free to sign on to this e-mail petition concerning HB 1465 and HB 2332.
Here’s some things to consider when calling-
-All people living and working in Virginia should be treated fairly and deserve respect for their human rights. This legislation is motivated by racism and fear of latino people in our communities.
-Turning Virginia police into ICE agents means more immigrants awaiting deportation being imprisoned for long periods of time, prisons are already overburdened and immigration offenses are not felonies, we should not treat them as such by keeping people in jails for as long as a year.
-This imprisonment creates a huge tax burden on Virginia taxpayers, and will likely lead to more prisons being built with more tax money under private contract- that means prison profiteers will benefit greatly from an increased immigrant detainee population.
-Virginia’s undocumented population will not cooperate with police in investigations or report crime if they know their resident status will be scrutinized and they could possibly be imprisoned for months and deported.
-Turning Virginia police into ICE officers will place a greater financial burden on the state.
-Virginia police should not be enforcing federal immigration policy
-Virginia’s localities should always know what is happening in their communities, requiring them to not be informed opens the door for abuse and keeps localities from protecting their citizens and residents whether documented or not.
-All of our state benefits when those in need are provided services and assistance, denying public service to undocumented people creates more poverty, more crime, and more suffering.
-Requiring public servants to check resident status before providing service turns all public servants in ICE agents- should all of Virginia’s state and local public servants, including teachers, be enforcing federal immigration policy? We think not. This will cause loss of employment for many public servants who have a moral conscience.
-All people in Virginia should have access to higher education, including the undocumented. This makes our world safer and more prosperous, and creates more responsible future citizens and legal residents. In the future we may see college as pathway for legal status in the United States, let’s not interfere with that process.
-Having licensed drivers makes the commonwealth a safer place to live, making it harder for immigrants to get a driver’s license means more people driving illegally.
-If a person is here illegally, and knows their status will be checked upon being stopped by police, they will likely hesitate or not participate with police. Under this legislation failure to give one’s name results in a misdemeanor and therefore a check of ones legal status. Why would anyone cooperate with police in those circumstances?
-All of Virginia deserves access to employment, a working population does not suffer as much, commit as much crime, or require as much burden on the state. There could be enough work for everyone, denying immigrants resources for job search is the same as denying all workers access to jobs.
-Federal trade policy is the main driver of latin american migration to the US, if we truly want to do something about immigration, change trade policy so that people have a better life in their countries of origin instead of holding people in jail cells in Virginia.