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The United States derives much of its strength and character from the many peoples who have built it.

U.S.-Mexico border fence
Tony Webster / Flickr
No trespassing sign at U.S.-Mexico border fence.

Part II, Section 5 of The World We Seek: Immigration and Refugees

II.5.1. The United States derives much of its strength and character from the many peoples who have built it and reside here. The immigration policies we envision will allow people to migrate to the United States regardless of their wealth, health, or skill levels; to preserve their families’ unity; to change their places of employment; to be free to stay with their families and communities as they await a status decision or removal; and to apply for lawful permanent status and eventual citizenship. With the right policies in place, work-related entry to the United States can meet the legitimate needs of the economy without undercutting job opportunities, pay, or working conditions for workers already in the United States. Fair labor laws and workplace health and safety standards should be firmly enforced regardless of workers’ immigration status. Those who arrived in the United States as children should be provided with an expeditious path to citizenship.

II.5.2. We support openness to refugees, including those displaced by climate extremes or severe economic conditions, victims of violence and human trafficking, populations made vulnerable by U.S. political or military interventions, and others seeking political asylum.

II.5.3. Immigration is a civil issue, not a criminal one. All persons, regardless of immigration status, deserve due process, including the opportunity to challenge effectively their detention or removal. A fair immigration enforcement system will fully utilize alternatives to detention. For as long as immigrants are detained, detention facilities should meet at least the standards required for criminal detention, uphold the human and civil rights of the detainees, and be separate from criminal detention.

II.5.4. Immigration laws should be enforced by federal authorities, not by local law enforcement. We oppose the militarization of our borders and the excessive use of force in immigration enforcement. Border communities, including tribal governments, must be directly involved in the decision-making processes regarding border enforcement policies.