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“How Comprehensive Immigration Reform Should Address the Needs of Women and Families”
Senate Judiciary Committee, Full Committee; DATE: March 18, 2013 TIME: 02:00 PM ROOM: Dirksen 226
"Eliminating or restricting family-based immigration would tear apart existing family structures and foster social isolation and disconnection. Yet, some proposals call for limitations in the family-based visa categories in order to increase employment visa categories. This approach is premised on the faulty assumption that American can only absorb a fixed number of immigrants at a given time when in fact, our nation’s needs are constantly changes – sometimes expanding and other times contracting. Adult children and siblings have been shown to have a direct impact on immigrant entrepreneurship. They help build family-owned businesses. They also provide critical care for elderly parents and minor children. The social and economic benefits that family-based immigration has provided America are numerous. And, because of the immeasurable value added to our communities by immigrants with existing family ties, the benefits of family-based immigration cannot be measured in comparison to the benefits of employment-based immigration. America benefits the most when the family- and employment-based systems are each working effectively. And a well-functioning family-based system strengthens the employment-based system by allowing workers to maintain their family unit in the U.S. Less family-friendly policies may dissuade high-skilled immigrants, who also have families, from choosing to invest in America’s economy with their talents and resources. Our immigration system must be flexible and capable of meeting the needs of both American businesses and families." - Statement of the American Immigration Lawyers Association, Submitted to the Committee on the Judiciary of the U.S. Senate.