Muslim Americans to
Join Immigration Marches
Los Angeles, CA: In solidarity with immigration
activists around the country, the Muslim Public Affairs
Council as well as the Council on American-Islamic Relations
- Los Angeles (CAIR-LA), the Islamic Shura Council of Southern
California, the LA Latino Muslim Association, the Muslim
American Society-Los Angeles, and the Muslim Students Association
- West (MSA West) are calling on American Muslims to participate
in a day of action on May 1, 2006.
On that day, the Multi-ethnic Immigrant Worker Organizing
Network (MIWON) is holding a march near downtown Los Angeles
in support of immigration reform and worker’ rights.
MPAC is coordinating Muslim American participation in this
important event, which affects Americans of all ethnic,
racial and religious backgrounds. Similar events will be
taking place across the country.
WHAT: International Worker's Day Immigration March
WHERE: McArthur Park (7th & Alvarado near Downtown LA)
WHEN: Monday, May 1st, 2006 at 4:00 p.m.
CO-SPONSORS: Muslim Public Affairs Council, Council on American-Islamic
Relations - Los Angeles (CAIR-LA), Islamic Shura Council
of Southern California, L.A. Latino Muslim Association (LALMA),
MSA West, Muslim American Society - Los Angeles (MAS-LA),
Multi-ethnic Immigrant Worker Organizing Network (MIWON)
WHY SHOULD MUSLIMS GET INVOLVED?
Islam's message is one of social justice, economic fairness,
and fair treatment in the workplace. The Qur'an urges the
proper treatment and respect of workers. Several Muslim
leaders discussed the relevance of the Qur'an to the struggle
for dignity in the workplace with union leaders and other
religious leaders during the "Islam and Labor: Forging
Partnerships Conference," held November 10, 2001 in
Washington, DC. Co-convened by the National Interfaith Committee
for Worker Justice and the Muslim Public Affairs Council
(MPAC), the conference sought to build relationships between
Muslims, interfaith committees and labor communities. As
the Prophet Muhammad is quoted as saying, "None of
you has faith unless you love for your brother what you
love for yourself."
It is against this backdrop that American Muslim organizations
are calling for a comprehensive immigration reform that
includes provisions for a pathway to lawful permanent residence
for the undocumented currently in the United States, a temporary
worker program that matches willing workers with willing
employers, and a reduction in the current backlogs in family-based
immigration to the United States.
HOW DO WE VIEW IMMIGRATION REFORM?
The United States has always been a nation of immigrants,
but today the country has more than 33 million foreign-born
residents, the largest number since the US Census started
keeping such statistics in 1850. In 2003, foreign-born residents
made up 11.7 percent of the population, the highest percentage
since 1910. And over the past 16 years, the newcomers, many
of them undocumented, have poured into places in the South
and Midwest that have not seen sizeable numbers of new immigrants
On December 16, 2005, the House of Representatives passed
HR 4437, the Border Protection, Antiterrorism, and Illegal
Immigration Control Act of 2005. The bill was introduced
by Congressman F. James Sensenbrenner, Jr. (R-WI). The Sensenbrenner
bill is an inadequate enforcement-only bill that fails to
address comprehensive immigration reform. In particular,
it does not include any provision for a guest worker program,
an earned legalization program, nor a reduction in the backlogs
for family-based immigration. Instead, the bill criminalizes
undocumented people for unlawful presence in the United
States, and criminalizes people who work or volunteer with
faith-based organizations for helping someone in need, who
turns out to be undocumented.
For more information, see: http://www.justiceforimmigrants.org/action.html.
[CONTACT: Edina Lekovic, 213-383-3443, email@example.com]