Immigrant Action Endorses Two Candidates in Advance of 9/13 Primary Election

Immigrant Action Endorses Jamaal Bailey for NYS Senate District 36 and Pamela Harris for Assembly District 46

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New York, NY — Today, Immigrant Action(The New York State Immigrant Action Fund), one of the largest 501(c)(4) immigrant rights groups in the country, endorsed Jamaal Bailey for the 36th District State Senate seat and Pamela Harris for the 46th District State Assembly seat in the September 13th Primary Election.

Immigrant Action Executive Director Steve Choi notes, “Both Jamaal and Pamela are fighters for working people and for immigrant rights. Immigrant Action is dedicated to supporting candidates and elected officials who will fight for immigrant communities and support humane immigrant policies. Jamaal and Pamela are those people. We are proud to support their candidacies for the State Legislature.”

“Jamaal has been a fighter for working people his entire career. He has long championed the fight for a living wage and the fight to ensure all New Yorkers have access to low-cost high quality health care.”

“Pamela’s long history of grassroots activism in support of her Coney Island community is commendable and her work in the Assembly to serve her constituents sets her apart from the other candidates.”

Bailey currently serves as Assembly Speaker Carl Heastie’s communications director and as a Democratic District Leader in the Bronx. Harris is the current Assemblywoman representing the 46th District.

The endorsement from Immigrant Action, a 501(c)(4) nonprofit that promotes the rights and socio-economic well-being of immigrants and refugees across New York State, follows their earlier announcement of support for Hillary Clinton ahead of the April Presidential primary election, which spurred the candidate to promise the creation of a national Office of New Americans.

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Same Old Anti-Immigrant Rhetoric From Donald Trump

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The following is a statement from Steve Choi, Executive Director of the New York State Immigrant Action Fund:

“For the last two weeks Donald Trump and his advisors have been talking out of both sides of their mouth when it comes to his plans for our immigration system.  Tonight, the truth became  clear --Donald Trump has doubled down on even more anti-immigrant hate, dangerous, nonsensical proposals, and a truly frightening vision of dealing with America’s 42 million immigrants.   

After tonight’s speech, it’s clear that not only does Donald Trump not understand how this country’s immigration system works, he has a fundamental disrespect for immigrants and the families who call the United States home. By claiming that immigration reform “should mean improvements to our laws and policies to make life better for American citizens” and no one else, he telegraphs quite clearly his values: that the 42 million immigrants who call America home are simply worth less than American citizens.

This is a betrayal of the promise of America and the values that make us who we are.

Tonight, Donald Trump laid out a plan that proved he’s deadly serious about enacting starkly anti-immigrant policies: from creating a deportation task force to rip families apart while attempting to deport 11 million people, to implementing an “ideological test” to incoming immigrants on their ability to “assimilate,” to suspending immigration altogether from certain countries based on vague principles.  And of course we can’t forget about that “great wall,” which will cost billions of dollars to build and will do nothing to keep us safe nor solve our immigration system.  

Time and time again Trump has demonstrated his commitment to a campaign strategy that is about attempting to win votes by inciting fear and hatred, not about providing real solutions.

But that's not the right answer for America, not for protecting family values, or for our 21st century economy.  Immigrants are our neighbors and family members, they pay local and federal taxes, they go to our churches, attend our schools, and shop in our stores. In New York alone almost 30% of all business are owned and operated by immigrants. New Yorkers won’t be fooled by Trump’s most recent campaign machinations--we know what’s at stake in this election.

The choice for New York - and America - has become even more clear after tonight: a President Donald Trump is a nightmare for immigrant communities and our allies, and we must do everything we can to elect a candidate - Hillary Clinton - who will bring a sensible, smart and humane approach for the 4.3 million New Yorkers who might have been born abroad but are Americans through and through.”

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Immigrant Action Executive Director on CNN

Immigrant Action Fund Executive Director Steve Choi appeared on CNN Newsroom with Carol Costello in advance of Donald Trump's speech on immigration on August 30, 2016.

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Immigrant Action Endorses Marisol Alcántara for NYS Senate District 31 Seat

Press Contact:
Anu Joshi, Deputy Director
Email: anu.joshi@nysiaf.org
Mobile: 828.469.7423

Immigrant Action Endorses Marisol Alcántara for NYS Senate District 31 Seat

New York, NY — Today, Immigrant Action (The New York State Immigrant Action Fund), one of the largest 501(c)(4) immigrant rights groups in the country, endorsed Marisol Alcántara for the 31st District State Senate seat in the September 13th Primary Election. Joined by several union leaders representing workers in the 31st district, Immigrant Action Executive Director Steve Choi noted, “Marisol represents what is best about this country--and the values that Immigrant Action Fund is fighting for. Having moved to the United States as a child, she uniquely understands the power of immigrants and their families to work together to fight for the common good.”

Marisol Alcantara endorsement

View the video stream on Facebook.

“Immigrant Action is dedicated to supporting candidates and elected officials who will fight for immigrant communities and support humane immigrant policies. Marisol is one of those people. Since working to enfranchise Latino voters in the 2004 and 2008 elections, she has dedicated herself to working for the rights of low wage workers through her work with unions like SEIU 32BJ, SEIU 758, UNITE HERE Local 100 and the Immigrant Worker Assistance Alliance.”

Upon receiving Immigrant Action’s endorsement,  Marisol Alcántara commented, “It is incredibly meaningful to have the support of Immigrant Action, and I know the urgency of passing immigration reforms first hand. I know the anxiety and suffering that families living in the shadows of our broken immigration system suffer every day. That’s why I’ll fight to ensure tuition equality for all New Yorkers, protect farmworkers from abuse and exploitation, ensure all immigrants can obtain a driver’s license, and expand higher education opportunities for all students. With violence against immigrants on the rise, and Donald Trump’s hate speech dominating the news, I’ll be a champion for immigrants in Albany.”

"Es muy importante tener el respaldo del Fondo de Acción Inmigrante del Estado de Nueva York, y conozco a primera instancia la urgencia de aprobar una reforma migratoria", dijo Alcántara. "Conozco la ansiedad y el sufrimiento que experimentan cada día las familias que viven a las sombras de nuestro sistema quebrantado de inmigración. Es por eso que lucharé por aprobar el DREAM Act, proteger del abuso y la explotación a los trabajadores de las granjas, asegurar que los inmigrantes indocumentados obtengan una licencia de manejar y ampliar las oportunidades de educación post-secundaria para todos los estudiantes. Con el aumento en la violencia contra los inmigrantes y el mensaje de odio de Donald Trump dominando los titulares, seré una defensora de los inmigrantes en Albany".

The endorsement from Immigrant Action, a 501(c)(4) nonprofit that promotes the rights and socio-economic well-being of immigrants and refugees across New York State, follows their earlier announcement of support for Hillary Clinton ahead of the April Presidential primary election, which spurred the candidate to promise the creation of a national Office of New Americans.  

Ms. Alcantara is being challenged by ex-City Councilman Robert Jackson and former Attorney General Eric Schneiderman Chief of Staff Micah Lasher.

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Immigrant Action Endorses Hillary Clinton in Advance of New York Primary

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On April 13, Immigrant Action proudly announced its endorsement of Hillary Clinton for President. Surrounded by Immigrant Action staff and board members and diverse community leaders, the Secretary of State happily accepted the endorsement.

For information about how to volunteer with the campaign, check out HillaryClinton.com.

The announcement comes after weeks of careful deliberation by Immigrant Action. During the special endorsement event and community round table, former Secretary of State Clinton joined Immigrant Action Executive Director Steven Choi and a group of diverse immigrant New Yorkers to offer her take on a range of issues including immigration relief, naturalization and citizenship, and how best to build ladders of opportunity for diverse communities.

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May Y. Chen, Board President of Immigrant Action, noted, “what is most important is to remain organized and mobilized around immigration advocacy issues before, during, and after the elections. During her tenure as U.S. Senator for New York, Hillary provided effective constituent services program for immigrants, and she was responsive to the needs and concerns of immigrant communities in New York during her long career of public service. She also has the grit, experience, persistence and diligence to make history as the first female President of the United States.”

Clinton also announced a series of new policies around immigration, because of Immigrant Action's advocacy along with other allies.

These include:

  • The creation of a National Office of Immigrant Affairs to ensure a dedicated place in the White House to push for immigrant services and policies;
  • A significant increase in federal resources for adult English language and citizenship education;
  • A commitment to further reducing barriers to naturalization through expanding fee waivers and other cost reductions for the working immigrant poor; and
  • $15 million in new grant funding for affordable immigrant services and community navigators

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