Charlottesville, Va.—On Wednesday, May 1, Virginia Organizing and other groups held multiple public events across the state as a part of a grassroots campaign in support of comprehensive immigration reform.
In Charlottesville and Virginia Beach, community members gathered to hear stories from people who are directly affected by immigration reform.
Melanie Miller, a clergy person in Charlottesville, believes she has a faith mandate to fight for comprehensive immigration reform that includes protections for workers that are fair and just. Miller said, “I glimpsed the injustices of predatory labor practices to which undocumented workers were repeatedly subjected when I worked in a law firm that practiced immigration and labor law.”
In Harrisonburg and Fredericksburg, Virginia Organizing held phone banks to encourage supporters of comprehensive immigration reform to contact their U.S. Representatives and ask for their support on this important issue.
Jesse Johnson, a Fredericksburg Chapter leader of Virginia Organizing, believes that we are a nation of immigrants and wants to spread the message that we need to fix our broken immigration system. “If people want the opportunity to improve their lives, we shouldn’t stop them. There is an abundance of resources for all of us and when we have diversity in the marketplace of ideas, we can gain even more in the economic and social aspects of our nation,” said Johnson.
In April, hundreds of Virginians gathered across the state to rally and march for comprehensive immigration reform. Virginia Organizing has identified several key provisions that should be included in any reform measure.
“First and foremost, Virginia Organizing supports a clear path to citizenship. The current legislation is concerning to us because there are significant cost and time barriers to obtaining citizenship,” said Virginia Organizing Chairperson Sandra A. Cook.
“Virginia Organizing also believes the reunification of families, including a halt to deportations, and provisions to ensure just and fair working conditions be on the minds of every Member of Congress,” said Cook.
In addition to holding community events, Virginia Organizing has met with U.S. Representatives and Senators to discuss the importance and magnitude of comprehensive immigration reform.
Virginia Organizing grassroots members will continue to hold community events in order for directly affected people to share their stories with policymakers in Washington, D.C.
To interview a spokesperson for Virginia Organizing, please contact Amanda Pohl at 804-337-1912 or firstname.lastname@example.org.
Virginia Organizing is a non-partisan statewide grassroots organization that brings people together to create a more just Virginia.