The Common Good

National Clergy Leaders Urge Protection of Family Unity as Senate Immigration Markup Proceeds

Date: May 15, 2013

As the Senate Judiciary Committee begins the markup of the Immigrant Visa Title II section of the bipartisan immigration bill, prominent clergy leaders are lifting up their prophetic voices and strongly supporting amendments that would strengthen family unity. The faith community remains committed to pro-family immigration reform that unites immigrant families, and is supporting amendments offered by Senator Mazie Hirono (D-HI) that would restore the ability of U.S. citizens to sponsor their siblings and married children over 30, and allow individuals with registered provisional immigrant status to sponsor their immediate family members outside of the United States.

While the current immigration reform bill, S. 744, includes some positive provisions that would improve family reunification, it would also eliminate the ability for U.S. citizens to sponsor their siblings and married children over the age of 30. The following quotes from clergy and social justice leaders demonstrate the faith community’s support for amendments that would improve the current immigration reform bill's family provisions, and opposition to proposals that would prevent family reunification:

Lisa Sharon Harper, Director of Mobilizing, Sojourners:

“As people of faith, we should urge Senate Judiciary Committee members to support amendments that strengthen an immigration system that protects families. We pray that our leaders will work to preserve the family unity of aspiring Americans as they seek an earned pathway to citizenship.
Christians should strongly urge members of the Senate Judiciary Committee to oppose any amendment that would make it more difficult for families to stay together.”