.- As Congress prepares to debate comprehensive immigration reform, citizens’ groups are urging legislators to devise a balanced approach that secures borders but recognizes the contributions that immigrants make to the U.S. economy and society.
"This debate goes to the heart of what America is all about," stated Dr. Juan Hernandez, Reform Institute Senior Fellow and author of The New America Pioneers.
"Two fundamental pillars of our society are our dedication to achieving prosperity through hard work and our devotion to the Judeo-Christian values of compassion, mercy and inclusion,” said Hernandez, a leading figure in the Latino evangelical community.
“Instead of backing away from these core beliefs and fencing ourselves in, we must renew this spirit through a sensible and effective immigration policy that provides a path to permanent legal status for immigrants who strengthen our economy and society," he added.
"If Congress cannot agree on legislation by August, the next chance for reform will probably not come for another two years,” noted Cecilia Martinez, executive director of the Reform Institute.
"We need bipartisan, comprehensive legislation now," said Pam Pryor of We Care America. "Comprehensive immigration reform is the only approach that protects our borders and preserves our core values."