Krista Brewer: Bring undocumented workers out of hiding
This letter to the editor appeared in the AJC Sunday, July 24.
“Building competitiveness through immigration reform” (Opinion, July 17) presents credible policy changes aimed at allowing immigrants trained in certain fields to work here. However, the authors fail to mention the undocumented currently in the United States. Many have lived, worked and contributed to our society and our economy for decades.
We have turned a blind eye as immigrants streamed across our borders seeking jobs and a better life. We have been happy to pay cheap labor for back-breaking work that none of us can, nor want to do. The rise in anti-immigrant views and enactment of state legislation are aimed at sending the undocumented back to their country of origin. But we as a nation will not deport these millions. Our economy cannot sustain that loss. Most Americans would find it morally wrong.
It’s fine to propose making it easier for a physics graduate student to stay in this country, but true immigration reform must bring the undocumented millions out of the shadows. It must also offer a path toward citizenship for those who meet reasonable criteria and who want to become legal Americans — with the papers to prove it.
Krista Brewer, Atlanta
Krista Brewer is a native of Atlanta and the past president of the Georgia WAND board. She now serves on the Georgia WAND Advisory Board and is involved in a range of WAND related issues including extensive work with Get Out the Vote and We Count! campaigns.