BURLINGTON, Vt. – As he returned home to celebrate Thanksgiving with his family, U.S. Sen. Bernie Sanders introduced a bold plan to reform our immigration system. Sanders’ plan puts families first, focuses on common sense reforms to build the middle class and embraces our nation’s diversity.
“As we gather with our loved ones to give thanks, we should reflect on the fact that not all families will be so lucky,” Sanders said. “Millions of families are torn apart by our broken immigration policies. We cannot forget about the aspiring Americans who continue to live in the shadows. As the son of an immigrant, I can tell you that their story – my story, your story, our story – is the story of America: the story of hardworking families coming to the United States to create a brighter future for their kids. We have an obligation to enact policies that unite families, not tear them apart.”
If elected, Sanders would:
- Dismantle inhumane deportation programs and private detention centers.
- Offer humane treatment and asylum to victims of domestic violence and minors fleeing from dangerous circumstances in Latin America.
- End policies that discriminate against women and ensure that mothers and wives who come into the United States with their families have the same right to work as their partners.
- Pave the way for a swift legislative path to citizenship for 11 million undocumented immigrants.
- Close loopholes that allow federal agencies to use racial and ethnic profiling at the border.
- Ensure our border remains secure and protects local communities.
- Make it easier for immigrants to access the judicial system.
- Increase oversight of key Department of Homeland Security agencies to guard against waste, fraud and abuse.
Sanders pledged to make immigration a top priority of his administration, even if Congress refuses to act. He will take executive action to allow all undocumented people who have been in the United States for at least five years to stay in the country without fear of being deported. Under Sanders’ plan, close to 9 million aspiring Americans will be able to apply to stay in the United States.
“As president, I will fight for comprehensive immigration reform that provides a pathway to citizenship and is grounded in civil, humane and economic rights. But let me be clear: I will not stand idly by waiting around for a dysfunctional Congress to act. Instead, during the first 100 days of my administration I will take extensive action to accomplish what Congress has failed to do and to build upon President Obama’s executive orders.”
Click here to read Sanders’ plan.