Obama's Public Promise to Reform Immigration this Year

By Allison Johnson 4-09-2009

Hundreds of faith leaders and immigrant advocates across the country visiting their members of Congress at home this week just got a huge boost from the Obama administration.

How so? The front page of The New York Times today declares "Obama to Push Immigration Reform," and senior administration officials said on record that it will happen this year.

Some say it cannot be done -- that it isn't feasible to reform immigration during a recession or that Obama is spread too thin. However, the urgency of children being separated from their parents and the impact of enforcement raids which tear communities apart cannot be ignored any longer.

To those who doubt us, we say -- yes we can. Reforming immigration is a challenge that the faith community is ready and willing to tackle. We are on the front lines in providing services and compassion to immigrants in our neighborhoods and parishes, and we know the daily challenges that over 12 million undocumented immigrants face due to their lack of legal status in this country.

We also know the power of prophetic advocacy. The gospel compels us to act in the face of injustice, and the majority of Americans believe that the system we have in place doesn't work or keep us safer. We insist on humane immigration reform which reflects the best of America's values, not the worst. We acknowledge that times are tough, but we believe we should always strive for the common good, and fixing immigration benefits us all.

The following video is just a taste of what people of faith have been up to this past year as we lead in the vast and growing movement for immigration reform. Watch it, share it with your loved ones, and let your representatives in Washington know that you care by sending it their way.

Allison JohnsonAllison Johnson is the campaign coordinator of Christians for Comprehensive Immigration Reform. Her commentary "Shackling the Stranger" appears in the April issue of Sojourners.

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