SVDP-USA on Immigration Policies

by | Apr 2, 2013 | Justice and Peace, Society of St. Vincent de Paul

svdp_logo_usaSheila GIlbert, St. Vincent de Paul Society National President, released the following statement….

Senator Rand Paul (R-KY) addressed the U.S. Hispanic Chamber of Commerce a few weeks ago about some important issues. Among other things, he said that  education is the “civil rights issue of our time.” That may contain some hyperbole, but I’m sure that most of us would agree that we, as Vincentians, see a great number of people for whom a better education would have been a factor that likely would have kept them from calling us in need.

Senator Paul also made a comment about the solution to our current immigration debate, saying: “Let’s start that conversation by acknowledging we aren’t going to deport 12 million illegal immigrants.”

Whether you agree with that view or not, finding common ground is critical in the current discussions on how our nation solves this issue. One place Vincentians can begin finding common ground is the statement on immigration approved by our Board of Directors and the National Council, which states:

“In brief the immigration polices of the U.S. should be based upon the following guiding principles:

  • People have the right to find opportunities in their own homelands.
  • People have the right to migrate to support themselves and their families.
  • Sovereign nations have the right to control their borders.
  • Refugees and asylum seekers should be afforded protection.
  • The human dignity and human rights of undocumented imgrants should be respected.”

The Board of Directors and the National Council also said that the government should: “Establish legal procedures that will allow undocumented immigrants and their families already established in the U.S. to come forward, obtain work and travel permits, and begin the process of becoming permanent residents and citizens.”

SVDP Voice of the PoorTo read the entire Voice of the Poor’s recommendations on immigration, you can click on the following link: Read the VOP Position Paper on Immigration.

I am asking you to contact your legislators, and let your voice represent the many whom you see in your service, those who live under the threat and exploitation every day as they try to earn a living for their families. I realize that this may require you to put aside your personal political views and, as our Church teaches, give preference to the views of those who are living in poverty or disenfranchised.

If you’d like to find out who your elected representative(s) are and their contact information, click on the following link: Find My Elected Representatives

Finally, please click on the following link to sign up for Capwiz, the system that enables us to contact you when we need your involvement in helping to influence important legislation and issues that affects those we serve:

Sign up for Capwiz NOW

Yours in St. Vincent de Paul and Blessed Frédéric Ozanam,

Sheila Gilbert

National President

Thank you for your dedication, hard work and service as a
Voice of the Poor.


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