In response to the U.S. Senate’s passage today of immigration reform legislation, the leadership of the New York Civil Liberties Union issued the following statement, attributable to NYCLU Executive Director Donna Lieberman:
“While the Senate’s immigration reform bill contains significant flaws, it includes several major advancements to civil liberties and human rights, including a plan to provide millions of aspiring citizens now living in the shadows the legal status they deserve to live, work and raise their families free of fear. Other positive provisions would improve due process and detention conditions in immigration facilities and courts, and provide significant new protections for all immigrant workers.
“Here in New York, the bill reduces from 100 miles to 25 miles the ‘Constitution free’ zone along our northern border where Border Patrol agents can stop people without warrants and intrude onto private property.
“However, the bill’s extreme enforcement provisions along the Southwest border are wasteful, unnecessary, and lack government oversight or accountability. The NYCLU will work with our congressional delegation to address these and other offensive provisions while continuing to support comprehensive immigration reform legislation that all New Yorkers can be proud of.”