December 16th, 2009
CIR ASAP is without a doubt one of the most progressive pieces of legislation we have seen, especially when it comes to comprehensive immigration reform. But progressive reform is not radical and in negotiations around policy it is often those that need the most help, some of the most marginalized in our communities, who get left out in the cold in the name of the greater good. Luis Gutierrez’s bill isn’t any different.
From the start, the language of the bill is grandiose, referring to the U.S.’s commitment to families and civil rights and yet the bill leaves out members of the immigrant community where I live, GLBT families.
From the bill:
Dividing American families is not a moral or just solution to the broken immigration system. We need policies that treat all families equally and keep them together, to support each other and build strong communities.
Unless you are a GLBT family? From the ACLU’s response to the Gutiettez’s bill:
…it fails to include immigration
parity provisions that would allow gay U.S. citizens and permanent residents to sponsor their permanent partners for permanent residency, an immigration right that heterosexual spouses have long enjoyed. Without these immigration parity protections, immigrant families in the U.S., including many with U.S. citizen children, will continue to be torn asunder.
December 16th, 2009
I just received this via the twitter account of NewYorkology:
@NewYorkology: RT @BAM_Brooklyn Just announced: Pedro Almodóvar will intro BROKEN EMBRACES this Fri at 6:40pm. http://ow.ly/MKGt
Tickets are on sale now and they will sell out! If you missed it, check out VL’s review of Los Abrazos Rotos/Broken Embraces.
foto credit: Jean-Baptiste Mondino for The New York Times via http://bit.ly/5oEJ09
December 16th, 2009
From Reform Immigration For America, here’s a handy summary of the bill presented by Congressman Luis Gutierrez. I still to run my fine tooth comb through it pero it must have some good stuff in it based on the fact that us just writing about the bill being presented has garnered hate mail. Take a look and tell us what you think and no I’m not talking to the hateful anti-immigrant crew. Your comments will still get deleted.
Comprehensive Immigration Reform for
America’s Security and Prosperity
(CIR ASAP) Act of 2009
TITLE I – BORDER SECURITY, DETENTION, AND ENFORCEMENT
Subtitle A – Border Security:
Subtitle A of Title I assembles a vision of effective and accountable enforcement for the 21st century through maximizing border security by requiring the Secretary of Homeland Security to form a national strategy that is consistent with the progress already made. In order to achieve these goals, oversight and accountability for the Department of Homeland Security is emphasized, especially as they pertain to fiscal appropriations and cost-benefit analyses of operations and programs.
Protecting Our Borders: This subtitle protects United States border cities and communities from violence and crime along the U.S.-Mexico border by:
- Creating a Southern Border Security Task Force that is composed of federal, state, and local law enforcement officers
- Requiring a security plan for land ports of entry at the borders involved in international trade
- Expanding the programs under the Customs-Trade Partnership Against Terrorism that is in accordance to the SAFE Port Act
- Improving the exchange of information between federal agencies on North American Security by a conducting a targeted study of security clearance standards, document integrity, immigration and visa management and coordination, terrorist watch lists and smuggling operations
Effective Enforcement: Subtitle A achieves effective enforcement by improving personnel, assets and technology.
- Supports additional training, oversight and evaluation for agents who are the first face of America at the borders
- Ensures that Customs and Border Protection have sufficient personal equipment like body armor, weapons, and uniforms, and that Customs and Border Protection have sufficient assets such as helicopters, power boats, motor vehicles and other electronic equipment
- Promotes standards for searches of electronic devices and appropriate training for agents in conducting such searches
- Minimizes wasteful spending by developing and studying comprehensive uses of advanced technologies, such as aerial and automated surveillance
- Requires an inventory prior to any increase of personnel assets and technology
Securing Ports of Entry: Our nation’s ports of entry are modernized for our economic benefit and security by conducting a study of the infrastructure and operations to identify necessary improvements and projects to enhance border security and the flow of legitimate commerce and travel. This section:
- Improves infrastructure and recalibrates resources and training to allow for more effective screening of commercial goods and individuals so as to minimize threats to national security at ports of entry
- Increases the number of full-time port of entry inspectors, agricultural specialists, and support staff to improve the timely and safe flow of commercial goods and individuals
- Establishes a demonstration project to test and evaluate new port of entry technologies and also refines existing technologies and operational concepts
Combating Criminal Activity: This subtitle recognizes the role of state law enforcement at the border in combating criminal activity by creating border relief grant programs for Northern and Southern border state, local and tribal law enforcement entities. This section:
- Enables better training and technical assistance for state and local partners that deals with narcotics-related kidnapping, drug trafficking and the interdiction of weapons and currency
- Facilitates information-sharing and collaboration between federal and state partners
- Suspends the Operation Streamline program pending review of the goals, impacts and cost-benefit analyses
- Reimburses Northern and Southern border state and local prosecutors for prosecuting federally initiated drug cases
- Provides expanded resources for Operation Armas Cruzadas and Project Gunrunner to identify, investigate, and prosecute individuals involved in the trafficking and smuggling of firearms between Mexico and the United States.
Improving Partnerships: The importance of border communities as partners and allies are recognized as key in achieving effective enforcement by prioritizing community consultation in developing enforcement policies, border protection strategies and training. This subtitle:
- Establishes the U.S.-Mexico Border Enforcement Commission and a Border Communities Liaison Office to foster and institutionalize community consultation
- Prohibits military involvement in non-emergency border enforcement
- Prioritizes mitigating adverse impacts to federal, tribal, state, local and private lands, waters, wildlife and habitats by promoting cross-agency development of comprehensive monitoring and mitigation of ecological and environmental impacts of border security infrastructure and activity
Combating Human Trafficking: Subtitle A requires the development and implementation of a plan to improve coordination amongst federal and state partners to address human smuggling and migrant deaths. This section calls for additional ICE agents dedicated to combating human smuggling are stationed at ports of entry, requires reporting on migrant deaths, and establishes a study of strategies used at the Southern border to address this problem.