CARRBORO, N.C. -- Today (Monday, July 26), Mayor Lydia Lavelle, alongside 83 fellow mayors across 28 states, sent a letter to President Biden, Vice President Harris, Majority Leader Schumer and Speaker Pelosi calling for citizenship for Dreamers, Temporary Protected Status (TPS) recipients, farm workers, and other essential workers to be included in any economic recovery legislation, including through budget reconciliation.
The latest federal ruling against Dreamers underscores the urgency to deliver a path to citizenship for Dreamers and immigrant workers. Citizenship is critical for the country’s economic recovery and efforts to rebuild the infrastructure of America’s cities and towns.
"It’s time to finally deliver citizenship to essential workers and others who have helped Carrboro recover from COVID-19 and been our neighbors, colleagues, and friends," Mayor Lavelle said.
According to a study https://www.americanprogress.org/issues/immigration/reports/2021/06/14/500433/citizenship-undocumented-immigrants-boost-u-s-economic-growth/ by the Center for American Progress and UC Davis Global Migration Center, a new path to citizenship for Dreamers and TPS holders would add $799 billion to the GDP over ten years. Similarly, for essential workers, citizenship would add $989 billion over the same period. Overall, if Congress were to act, nearly 440,000 new jobs would be created, energizing the local economies of communities across the country.
The letter is included below:
Dear President Biden, Vice President Harris, Majority Leader Schumer, and Speaker Pelosi:
We, the undersigned mayors, respectfully request that you prioritize the inclusion of a pathway to citizenship for Dreamers, Temporary Protected Status (TPS) holders, essential workers, and their families in any economic recovery legislation including through budget reconciliation.
Today, there are an estimated 5 million undocumented immigrants working in construction, agriculture, food services and production, transportation, healthcare, and other essential industries who have risked their lives and the lives of their families to keep our nation running during one of the most challenging periods in modern history.
As our state and local communities continue to confront a public health and economic catastrophe that has claimed more than 500,000 lives and exacerbated deep racial and economic inequities, it is vital that Congress enact protections for Dreamers, TPS holders, and essential immigrant workers to secure the health of our nation and to lay the foundation for an equitable economic recovery for all communities across the country.
Providing a path to citizenship for these individuals and their families not only recognizes the sacrifices they have made for all Americans over the past year, but also the important role they continue to play in America’s economic recovery and long-term global competitiveness.
It’s time for Congress to act. The only way we can truly Build Back Better is to ensure that Dreamers, TPS holders, and essential workers are included in any economic recovery legislation including through budget.