Legal Momentum Applauds Critical First Step for Immigration Reform

Legislation must address plight of Immigrant Women and Families

New York (December 15, 2009) - Legal Momentum applauds the introduction of the Comprehensive Immigration Reform for America’s Security and Prosperity Act of 2009 (CIR ASAP) by Rep. Luis Gutierrez (D.-Ill.), chair of the Congressional Hispanic Caucus task force on immigration.

 
Irasema Garza, president of Legal Momentum, the women’s legal defense and education fund, says, “CIR ASAP represents a vital first step to improving the safety and health of America’s immigrant women and families.”
 
In order to fully address the unique needs of immigrant women, Legal Momentum believes that a path to legalization must recognize the non-traditional work which overwhelmingly employs immigrant women, promote family reunification in such a way that women are not dependent on spouses for years without access to lawful status and work authorization, and reform the enforcement and detention system particularly for vulnerable populations.   
 
Garza continues, “For too long, women immigrants have been invisible. Meanwhile, they contend with the highest levels of workplace exploitation and domestic violence in the nation. Comprehensive Immigration Reform offers a vital opportunity to fix a broke immigration system that disproportionately hurts women.”
 
It is critical that immigration reform legislation take into account immigrant women’s experiences and promote solutions to overcome the obstacles to economic access and justice confronting immigrant women and families. Legal Momentum looks forward to working with Rep. Gutierrez and other members of Congress who support this aim.
 
Read The Invisible Face of Immigration, by Irasema Garza.
Read Legal Momentum Immigrant Women Program’s Agenda for Change: Women in a Broken Immigration System.
 
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Founded in 1970, Legal Momentum, the Women’s Legal Defense and Education Fund, is dedicated to advancing the rights and personal and economic security of all women and girls.