Contact: Michael Mershon, Director of Advocacy and Communications
April 19, 2016
Today, Sojourners sent the following letter to Congress as part of the Interfaith Immigration Coalition's "Letter a Day" campaign:
"Dear Members of the United States Senate and House of Representatives,
Sojourners is a Christian advocacy organization dedicated to helping Christians put their faith into action for social justice. We are called as Christians and as Americans to welcome our neighbors, and so we call on you as our representatives to reject laws and rhetoric that marginalize immigrants and refugees instead of allowing them to fully contribute to their communities.
We call on members to support President Obama’s common-sense executive actions on immigration. The President’s expansion of Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA) and his establishment of Deferred Action for Parents of Americans (DAPA) help American children and their families to live in the United States without fear and to fully contribute to the economy and their communities. As exercises of prosecutorial discretion, they are in line with decades of bipartisan precedent.
We call on members to oppose legislation that would restrict or halt refugee resettlement. Our country has a long history of welcoming refugees, and we cannot turn our backs on those fleeing violence and persecution.
We call on members to explicitly call out and reject hateful rhetoric being used to demonize immigrants and refugees. Such rhetoric cannot simply be dismissed as just words—it has real consequences. It inflames and encourages hostile responses and even violence against immigrants and refugees, and it creates a climate of fear, mistrust, and anger that paralyzes attempts to promote and pass policies that would help our immigrant and refugee brothers and sisters.
We are called by our faith to welcome the stranger, care for the least of these, and see immigrants and refugees as our brothers and sisters. We are called as Americans to remember that we are a nation of immigrants, and that our history of welcoming immigrants and refugees is precisely what has made us strong as a nation and a symbol of freedom to the rest of the world. We ask you as our representatives to uphold these values in the way that you speak, act, and vote with regard to our immigrant and refugee brothers and sisters.