WASHINGTON, D.C.—The American Federation of Government Employees (AFGE) condemns President Bush’s immigration plan as a proposal that will overtly exploit some of the poorest workers in America and grant amnesty for millions of people who have illegally entered the country.
The plan does nothing to strengthen protections for wages, benefits and other immigrant rights, while insuring a steady pool of low-wage, disenfranchised workers to maximize profits for American companies.
And while in the President’s words it would, “offer legal status, as temporary workers, to the millions of undocumented men and women now employed in the United States,” it would unjustly reward those who illegally entered the U.S. and encourage millions of others to break our laws in the hope of yet another amnesty. After all, Congress granted amnesty to nearly three million illegal aliens in 1986, and has never taken any meaningful steps to stem the tide of illegal immigration.
Further the plan will hurt the American economy. It will allow employers to pay substandard wages to people who entered this country illegally and take jobs from American workers.
Our nation needs to enforce existing immigration laws designed to monitor and control the flow of people into and out of the U.S. This is critical to our national security and the only fair way to control our borders. This plan does nothing but encourage the flow of illegal immigrants.
The American Federation of Government Employees, AFL-CIO, is the largest union for government employees, representing some 600,000 federal workers in the United States and overseas, as well as employees of the District of Columbia. For more information about AFGE, visit www.afge.org.