Latinas Respond to House Discharge Petition for Immigration Reform
Latina health advocates urge Congress to advance health and fairness in immigration reform, adopt HEAL Immigrant Women and Families Act of 2014
(WASHINGTON, D.C.) – The National Latina Institute for Reproductive Health (NLIRH) responds to the filing of a discharge petition that would require House Majority Leadership to bring H.R. 15, a bill for comprehensive immigration reform, to the floor for a vote. The discharge petition, filed yesterday by H.R. 15 lead sponsor Rep. Joe Garcia (FL-26) will require 218 signatures in order to bring H.R. 15, a bill largely modeled off S. 744, the Senate-approved bill for immigration reform, to the floor for a vote.
Jessica González-Rojas, executive director of NLIRH has issued the following statement:
“Just like the members of Congress who filed a discharge petition to bring H.R. 15 to a vote, Latinas across the country are demanding the House of Representatives advance humane and just immigration reform that embraces the contributions and promotes the rights of immigrant women and families. Instead of producing legislation that would reform our nation’s immigration laws and policies and advance a roadmap to citizenship for the 11 million, the Majority of the House of Representatives has allowed votes on bills that would harm immigrant women and families; for example, the recent ENFORCE Act would dismantle the Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA) program and executive branch power over immigration.
“At the same time, we are concerned that H.R.15 – just like S. 744, the immigration reform bill passed by the U.S. Senate in June 2013 – would force immigrant women and families to wait up to 15 years or more before they are able to participate in the health care programs their tax dollars support. We urge members of Congress to adopt H.R. 4240 the Health Equity and Access under the Law (HEAL) for Immigrant Women and Families Act of 2014, introduced to Congress by Rep. Michelle Lujan Grisham (NM-01). The HEAL Immigrant Women and Families Act ensures all immigrants authorized to live and work in the United States are treated fairly by the health care system to which they contribute by eliminating the costly and counterproductive barriers immigrants face to the health care they need. It’s essential that immigration policy reform ensure that all members of our families and communities can live with health and dignity.”
The National Latina Institute for Reproductive Health is the only national reproductive justice organization dedicated to building Latina power to advance health, dignity, and justice for 26 million Latinas, their families, and communities in the United States through leadership development, community mobilization, policy advocacy, and strategic communications.