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National Day of Action: Focus on Immigration Reform

PHOTO: Participants at the NYS Interfaith Convocation for Immigration Reform started a week of activities that culminate with today's National Day of Action. Photo credit: C. Bonawandt, Long Island Wins
PHOTO: Participants at the NYS Interfaith Convocation for Immigration Reform started a week of activities that culminate with today's National Day of Action. Photo credit: C. Bonawandt, Long Island Wins
April 10, 2014

NEW YORK - New York supporters of immigration reform are sending messages to the White House and Congress today that Washington needs to step it up and take action. In fact, today has been declared a National Day of Action regarding immigration reform.

Maryann Sinclair Slutsky, executive director of Long Island Wins, said House Republicans need to bring the immigration issue to a vote. As for the Democrats, Slutsky said, they're demanding that President Obama expand deferred action programs and cut back quotas and deportations.

"We're really pushing the White House to end its quota programs like 'Secure Communities' and to suspend deportations," she said. "We have reached the 2 million mark of immigrants deported during the Obama administration."

A National Day of Action rally is planned for noon in Manhattan's Foley Square.

Slutsky will be part of a delegation of immigrants and their supporters calling on Congressman Peter King this afternoon. She said they believe that King, a Republican from Long Island, could be key to breaking the current logjam that is blocking comprehensive immigration reform in the House.

"We need leadership within the Republican Party, and we're asking him to really step up and push Speaker Boehner to call a vote on immigration reform," Slutsky stated.

Earlier this week, New York faith leaders from every major religion joined the call for reform. Slutsky said each read from their own scriptures about the moral responsibility to welcome the stranger.

"Really what we fail to remember in this debate is the human aspect of immigration, that these are human lives we are talking about: people, who have families, just like any other American," she said.

Long Island Wins will be hosting a community forum tonight at 6 at St Joseph's Convent in Brentwood to discuss where things stand on immigration reform and future plans.


Mike Clifford, Public News Service - NY