Statement from CHIRLA on President Obama's Administrative Relief announcement Thursday:
“With the stroke of a pen, millions of undocumented families who have lived in the shadows although they contribute positively to our nation’s strength, may soon be able to look up from the darkness and find they are recognized as full human beings, not criminals, full contributors to our society, not unwanted, feared or despised.
The President’s announcement comes at the right time but also after 2.5 million of our loved ones have been deported during the past six years. The price we have paid for the inaction in Congress has been far too high. With pressure, however, and thanks to the American people, President Obama has listened to our petition for justice and fairness, especially after this do-nothing Congress failed once again to fix our broken immigration system in 2014. President Obama deserves our community’s gratitude for this courageous act of love and compassion.
It is the best of times for millions of our loved ones while it remains the darkest of times for many more who continue to fight for the opportunity to realize their American Dream. We have often stated a deferred action program, while important to relieve the suffering of millions, is a temporary solution. Legislation with a path to citizen is the permanent solution and we will continue to hold Congress accountable for failing to pass sensible and humane immigration reform.
We await to learn more details about the President’s plan and we look forward to working with our community to educate them, prepare them, and urge them to take advantage of this key opportunity. The dreams of millions tonight may not be so unreal after all. That’s the American way.”