Press

Nation’s Leading LGBT Advocacy Organizations Reject Efforts by House GOP to Play Politics and Leave Millions of Immigrants Behind with KIDS Act

Date: 
July 24, 2013

Media Contacts:

Mark Daley
Director of Communications
Office: 202.639.6325
Cell: 202.379.8318
mdaley@theTaskForce.org

Erik Olvera
NCLR
Office: 415.392.6257, ext. 324
Mobile: 415.994.3242
EOlvera@NCLRights.org

Monica Trasandes
GLAAD
Phone: 323.634.2025
Trasandes@GLAAD.org

Kristin Ford
United We Dream
202.570.6441
Kristin@unitedwedream.org

This statement can be attributed to the National Center for Lesbian Rights, GLAAD, National Gay and Lesbian Task Force, United We Dream and Queer Undocumented Immigrant Project, and the National Center for Transgender Equality.

Washington, July 24 — This afternoon, the U.S. House of Representatives will meet to discuss the so-called KIDS Act, a piece of craven political theater that threatens to tear apart immigrant families. Singling out some immigrant youth for a path to citizenship – while subjecting their families to constant fear of deportation – is as senseless as it is out of step with the American public. It’s time to stop playing politics with people’s lives.

As a coalition of the nation’s leading LGBT advocacy organizations committed to comprehensive, compassionate immigration reform, we seek nothing short of a roadmap for citizenship for all 11 million undocumented immigrants in this country, including at least 267,000 LGBT people. Through organizations like United We Dream and the Queer Undocumented Immigrant Project, LGBT youth have played a vital role in the DREAMer movement. Together with their straight allies, they will not settle for House Republicans offering a crumb to some and deportation for the rest.

The Republicans pushing this misguided legislation are the same politicians who killed the DREAM Act in 2010, opposed deferred action for DREAMers to prevent them from deportation in 2012, and then voted to defund the initiative last month. It’s time for these politicians to make a choice: either deliver a real solution on immigration and start to rebuild their political brand with the fastest growing demographic in the country, or step further and further away from mainstream Americans with extreme proposals that fall short of a real, long-term solution.

The Senate has done their job. Last month, the Senate passed a bipartisan bill that includes, among other provisions, a historic path to citizenship for undocumented immigrants, reunification provisions to bring back together families torn apart by deportations and detentions, and the strongest DREAM Act ever written.

The Senate bill is far from perfect. In exchange for its passage, the Senate pledged $40 billion of spending for ‘border security.’ This wasteful overkill will have a harmful impact on border communities, particularly LGBT immigrants living on the border, and undermine the principles of humane enforcement. However, the legislation brings us one important step closer to reforming our immigration policies and keeping more families together.

Nearly 9 in 10 voters would not support a House bill that strips away this path to citizenship; it’s time for their leaders to listen to public will. If House Republicans are serious about fixing our broken immigration system, they will stop the brinkmanship and propose a real solution.

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The National Gay and Lesbian Task Force Action Fund builds the grassroots political power of the lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender community. The Task Force Action Fund does this through direct and grassroots lobbying to defeat anti-LGBT ballot initiatives and legislation, and works to pass pro-LGBT legislation and other progressive initiatives. The Task Force Action Fund is a 501(c)(4) nonprofit corporation incorporated in New York. Contributions to the Task Force Action Fund are not tax-deductible.