Illinois General Assembly - Full Text of HR0215
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Full Text of HR0215  102nd General Assembly




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2    WHEREAS, Illinois is home to 1.8 million immigrants who
3have traveled to the State of Illinois from around the world to
4seek a better life and to 1.7 million U.S.-born citizens who
5have at least one immigrant parent; and
6    WHEREAS, Our nation's immigration system should uphold our
7basic values of family, economic opportunity, fairness, and
8second chances; and
9    WHEREAS, The U.S. immigration system, which has resulted
10in long backlogs and deaths on the border, is unjust and
11inequitable and is in dire need of reforms, including a
12pathway to citizenship for all undocumented immigrants; and
13    WHEREAS, The current coronavirus pandemic has highlighted
14the importance of immigrants, including the undocumented, as
15"essential workers" who have sustained, for both our State and
16our nation, our health care system, food chain, and other
17vital services, often at great risk to their own and their
18families' health and well-being; and
19    WHEREAS, The administration of Donald Trump further
20aggravated the flaws within our immigration system by
21unleashing immigration enforcement, separating children and



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1parents at the southern border, gutting refugee and asylum
2processing, further complicating legal immigration through
3such policies as the new public charge rule, attempting to end
4protective programs such as DACA and Temporary Protected
5Status (TPS), imposing a new naturalization test, further
6complicating the process to apply for citizenship, and
7instituting many other policies that have created fear,
8confusion, and pain among families throughout our State and
9nation; and
10    WHEREAS, The election and inauguration of Joe Biden as
11president provides an opportunity to not only undo his
12predecessor's harmful policies but to also address the more
13basic inequities and racial disparities within our immigration
14system and to enact a pathway to citizenship that would
15protect DACA and TPS recipients, essential workers, and all
16undocumented immigrants, currently numbering approximately 11
17million nationwide and 450,000 in Illinois; and
18    WHEREAS, Current immigration proposals in Congress would
19exclude those convicted of prior felonies and misdemeanors,
20provisions that exclude approximately one-third of potential
21applicants, disproportionately affecting Black immigrants; and
22    WHEREAS, Excluding those who have already served their
23time and are currently contributing to their communities is a



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1form of double punishment, which is antithetical to our values
2as a state and as a nation; and
3    WHEREAS, The State of Illinois has historically welcomed
4immigrants, and elected officials of both major political
5parties have supported legislation, policies, and programs
6that have enabled immigrants to work, learn, raise families,
7build businesses and communities, and express their voice in
8the civic life of our State; and
9    WHEREAS, The State of Illinois has more recently taken
10national leadership on welcoming policies for immigrants,
11including funding for citizenship and community outreach
12programs, educational aid for immigrant students, driver's
13licenses for immigrant motorists, and protections against
14federal immigration enforcement policies that undermine
15relations between immigrant communities and local police; and
16    WHEREAS, These policies adopted by the State of Illinois
17intend to separate state law enforcement from federal
18immigration enforcement and are designed to protect all
19immigrants in our State regardless of prior interaction with
20the legal system; and
21    WHEREAS, At this moment when our nation faces a reckoning
22on racial justice, prompted by the deaths of George Floyd,



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1Breonna Taylor, and so many other Black Americans but
2reflecting historic discrimination and disinvestment against
3Black, Indigenous, and other communities of color, we need to
4ensure that our immigration laws and policies and other laws
5that affect immigrant communities must be grounded in racial
6equity; therefore, be it
9we call upon the Biden Administration to take immediate steps,
10including executive orders, administrative policy changes, and
11regulatory changes, to undo the harmful immigration policies
12of the Trump Administration, including but not limited to
13halting and dismantling the immigration enforcement machinery
14that has harmed and separated thousands of Illinois families;
15and be it further
16    RESOLVED, That we call upon the Biden Administration,
17Senator Richard Durbin, Senator Tammy Duckworth, and the
18Illinois U.S. House Delegation to enact legislation to create
19a pathway to citizenship for all undocumented immigrants, fix
20other provisions of our immigrations laws that exclude and
21otherwise harm immigrants, address the root causes of
22international migration, and ground our immigration laws in
23justice and equity; and be it further



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1    RESOLVED, That suitable copies of this resolution be
2delivered to President Biden, the Majority Leader and Minority
3Leader of the United States Senate, the Speaker and Minority
4Leader of the United States House of Representatives, Senators
5Durbin and Duckworth, and all members of the Illinois U.S.
6House Delegation.