Back to All Commentary

Letter: Protect Rights in Immigration Fix (Rochester Democrat and Chronicle)

To the Editor:

The plight of migrant farm workers in Sodus, Wayne County, and throughout the region demonstrates an urgent need for comprehensive immigration reform (“U.S. awaits reform of immigration laws,” Aug. 10 story).

In attempting to fix an irrational and broken immigration system, Congress must respect American values of privacy, due process and equal protection for everyone, including immigrants.

Unfortunately, Sen. Charles Schumer’s proposed worker ID card system would endanger the privacy rights of all people, including current citizens. It’s a thinly veiled national ID system that would facilitate government tracking of Americans’ daily activities and trigger discrimination against those who look or sound “foreign.”

In the current economic climate, the government should not hinder anyone’s ability to work. Schumer’s proposal would do just that. Experience tells us database errors, red tape and technical glitches would surely cost people jobs.

Sensible immigration reform should recognize that immigrants are a critical part of New York’s economy. Workable reform would offer undocumented workers a pathway to citizenship while respecting everyone’s constitutional rights.

Gary Pudup
Director, Genesee Valley Chapter of the New York Civil Liberties Union

As bold as the spirit of New York, we are the NYCLU.
© 2024 New York
Civil Liberties Union