NEWS & OBSERVER: Forced migration from Mexico
September 21st, 2009
I agree with the Rev. George Reed of
the N.C. Council of Churches: We need comprehensive immigration reform
(Sept. 10 Point of View article). The system is broken. We also need a
change in our trade laws.
Last February, I led a Witness for
Peace delegation to Mexico to investigate the root causes of
immigration. We found that because of the impact of trade policies such
as NAFTA on Mexico, many Mexican citizens are forced to migrate in
search of work and better wages.
We need trade policies that will
decrease poverty and unemployment so that Mexicans and Central
Americans will be able to earn sufficient money to care for their
families and stay in their communities.
We need a new immigration system that will allow visas for workers to
enter the U.S. legally through the ports of entry, a system that allows
the undocumented a pathway to citizenship as well as a system that will
not continue to lock up over 400,000 people a year for minor offenses.