This resolution was presented by MIRAc and passed at a Town Hall Forum on Civil Liberties on June 4, 2012 in at the American Indian OIC in Minneapolis.
Respect the Civil Liberties of Immigrant Workers in the U.S.
Submitted by the Minnesota Immigrant Rights Action Committee (MIRAc)
Whereas: In the United States today, there are over 12 million undocumented immigrants. Immigrants in the U.S. have their basic civil liberties violated every day in countless ways.
Whereas: All human beings have a right to basic civil liberties and rights such as the freedom from slavery and forced labor; freedom from torture and death; the freedom to migrate to seek a better life or to escape from oppression and poverty; the right to liberty and security; right to a fair trial; freedom of expression; freedom of assembly and association; the right to participation in the decisions that affect one’s life; the right to travel freely within the society one lives; and the right to marry or have a self-defined family structure respected and given equal treatment under the law.
Whereas: Many immigrant agricultural workers are forced into forced labor and even literally slavery in the U.S today as has been documented by the Coalition of Imokalee Workers (see http://www.ciw-online.org/museum_news_page.html)
Whereas: Thousands of immigrants die every year trying to cross the U.S.’s southern border because of conscious U.S. policy pushing people into the remotest desert locations.
Whereas: Dozens or hundreds of anti-immigrant laws exist for the specific purpose of making undocumented immigrants feel insecure and live in constant fear of family separation and deportation.
Whereas: Over a million immigrants have been deported over the last three years. They technically all have the right to a hearing before a judge, but in reality we believe this is a deportation machine that is not designed to provide fair trials.
Whereas: Undocumented immigrants live in constant fear of deportation. Due to this, many immigrants in practice have their freedom of expression, assembly and association restricted by the fear that speaking out for their basic rights could lead to reprisals including deportation and separation of family.
Whereas: Millions of undocumented immigrants live and work in this country for years or even decades, but have no right to vote or to participate in the political decisions that affect their lives. This is disenfranchisement. All people should have the right to participate in the political decisions that affect their lives.
Whereas: In almost the entire United States, undocumented immigrants have no way to obtain a valid identification or driver’s licence; being stopped by the police while driving without a licence can lead to deportation; immigration authorities make sweeps on long distance buses; it’s impossible to fly without valid identification. All these facts vastly restrict undocumented immigrants’ right to travel within the country.
Whereas: Immigrants who are GLBTQ or who choose alternate family structures face discrimination from the government in not having their relationship recognized in cases where a heterosexual marriage could help to legalize their immigration status.
Therefore be it resolved: MIRAc calls on the U.S. government to respect all civil liberties of undocumented immigrants and to repeal all laws that restrict or violate the civil liberties of immigrants in the U.S. MIRAC demands legalization and full equality for all undocumented immigrants in the U.S. as the only way that undocumented immigrants’ civil liberties can be fully respected.