Congressional Democrats unveil bill putting undocumented essential workers on path to citizenship
Findings final yr showed that almost 3 in 4 undocumented workers are in essential roles amid the pandemic, from agriculture to well being care to sanitation. “As a result of their high rates of exposure,” a truth sheet from the Democratic legislators said, “immigrant essential workers and their families have borne high costs, being likelier to contract and die from COVID-19 which contributes to the disproportionate impact of COVID-19 on communities of color.”
California Sen. Alex Padilla unveiled his first piece of legislation since arriving in the Senate — a bill that would offer millions of immigrant essential workers and their families a path to citizenship https://t.co/4wHEEIbHhl
— San Francisco Chronicle (@sfchronicle) March 2, 2021
Doris Landaverde, a Temporary Protected Status (TPS) holder from El Salvador and janitor at Harvard University, was among the many essential workers who turned sick within the first weeks of the pandemic final yr. “After two weeks of working hard trying to clean and disinfect when the pandemic started last March, I started to show symptoms of COVID-19 and had to be quarantined,” she stated. “It was especially hard missing the birthday of my oldest daughter.”
The bill would shield the dad and mom of Leydy Rangel, who’s a Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA) recipient and comes from a farm-working household in California. “The grapes, bell peppers, lettuce and other fruits and vegetables that my family makes sure other Americans have to eat can’t be harvested through Zoom,” she said. Bipartisan senators last month also introduced legislation that may shield 2 million DACA recipients and DACA-eligible youth. “We can’t wait for relief any longer,” Rangel continued.
“The Citizenship for Essential Workers Act will also include undocumented workers who worked in essential industries but lost employment due to COVID-19,” the very fact sheet continued, “including leaving the job due to unsafe working conditions, as well as undocumented relatives of an essential worker who died from COVID-19.” In a sequence of tweets, Warren famous that essential workers are doing their jobs all of the whereas having the specter of deportation hanging over their heads, as a result of the identical Department of Homeland Security that classified them as essential workers additionally targets them for deportation.
“Essential workers risk their lives to keep our country running, but about 5 million live in fear of deportation,” she tweeted. “We owe America’s undocumented farmworkers, grocery workers, janitors, nurses and doctors, caregivers, and other essential workers more than just our thanks during this pandemic. We owe them a pathway to citizenship.” It’s reported that in a press convention unveiling the bill Friday, Warren urged the passage of the laws by way of reconciliation “right now.”
“I hope the government recognizes that essential workers are an important asset to the community and passes legislation to provide a path to citizenship for all immigrant essential workers, including TPS holders like me,” Landaverde continued. “We all deserve to be protected, respected and valued for the work we do.”
“We must not allow the workers who are called essential today to be deported tomorrow,” Castro stated. “Undocumented essential workers deserve to stay here in their home and to be recognized as the heroes—and Americans—they are.” Lieu stated he was “proud to partner with Congressman Castro and Senators Padilla and Warren to announce the Citizenship for Essential Workers Act. This legislation provides an expedited pathway to lawful permanent resident status and eventual U.S. citizenship for over 5 million undocumented essential workers who have been a critical part of the COVID-19 response. I urge my colleagues to support this bill.”