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Breaking News (4/17/2013)

Advocates for immigrant women commend introduction of bipartisan immigration reform bill in U.S. Senate

Urge Congress to close gaps for women’s health care, LGBT families, and ensure fairness and justice in enforcement

WASHINGTON, D.C. – Today, the National Coalition for Immigrant Women’s Rights (NCIWR) commends the U.S. Senate on its introduction of the “Border Security, Economic Opportunity and Immigration Modernization Act,” a bipartisan proposal for immigration reform. The NCIWR applauds the tireless work of the Senators leading the effort, known as the “Gang of Eight”—Michael Bennet (D–Colo.), Richard Durbin (D–Ill.), Jeff Flake (R–Ariz.), Lindsey Graham (R–S.C.), John McCain (R–Ariz.), Robert Menendez (D–N.J.), Marco Rubio (R–Fla.), and Chuck Schumer (D–N.Y.) and congratulates them on reaching an agreement on this important issue.

Read the full release here: English | Spanish.

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The National Coalition for Immigrant Women’s Rights (NCIWR) is comprised of grassroots and national advocacy organizations. We defend and promote equality for all immigrant women and their families living and working in the United States. We integrate human rights principles into our work and believe that immigrant rights are women’s rights. NCIWR advocates at the national, state and local levels for comprehensive immigration reform, fair and non-discriminatory implementation of our immigration and enforcement policies, and reproductive and economic justice for immigrant women.

Please use this website to view our members, position statements, and learn about the immigration issues we continue to face in our communities.

In solidarity,

Steering Committee Members

National Asian Pacific American Women’s Forum

National Latina Institute for Reproductive Health

Women’s Refugee Commission

The NCIWR steering committee would like to thank SEIU for almost two years of service. SEIU has decided to step down from the committee, but will continue to be an active member and strong supporter of the coalition. Thank you SEIU; your service and expertise were greatly appreciated!

GUIDING PRINCIPLES___________________________________

The National Coalition for Immigrant Women’s Rights (NCIWR) is comprised of grassroots and advocacy organizations nationwide. We defend and promote equality for all immigrant women and their families living and working in the United States. We integrate human rights principles into our work and believe that immigrant rights are women’s rights. NCIWR advocates at the national, state and local levels for comprehensive immigration reform, fair and non-discriminatory implementation of our immigration and enforcement policies, and reproductive and economic justice for immigrant women.

Equality for immigrant women can only be attained when immigrant women can live free from discrimination, oppression and violence in all their forms. We believe it is imperative that organizations advocating for comprehensive immigration reform also support fair and just immigration policies that protect the rights of immigrant women. The fate of millions of immigrant women’s lives is at stake and we can no longer afford to remain silent.

Therefore, we, the undersigned organizations, support the following NCIWR principles in advocating for fair and comprehensive immigration reform that includes a path to citizenship and protection for all immigrant women:

NCIWR promotes an equitable immigration policy that provides:

• Legal and safe immigration options for undocumented men, women and children. Immigrant women must be free of mental, physical and emotional violence at the hands of traffickers, smugglers, intimate partners, family members and others who exploit immigrant women’s legal and economic vulnerability. Our immigration and criminal justice systems must ensure that immigrant women and their children are protected from gender-based violence; and not perpetrate the cycle of violence against immigrant women and children by failing to provide adequate remedial measures to ensure immigrant their safety and physical integrity.

• A path to citizenship that allows immigrant women to obtain work permits, to travel internationally and access higher education and federal financial aid. Immigrant women must have viable options that will permit them to be full contributors in the U.S. economic and societal landscape.

• Legal channels for immigrant women workers to fill future U.S. jobs.

• Protection for all immigrant women workers from exploitation and abuse in the workplace by providing fair wages and safe working conditions.

• A reduction in the family and employment based immigration backlogs that contribute to separation of immigrant women from their children, families and communities.

• A family-based immigration policy that respects the rights of lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender immigrants and same-sex partners.

• An end to discriminatory, militaristic and inhumane immigration enforcement practices that destroy the families, homes and communities of immigrant women

National Coalition for Immigrant Women’s Rights promotes reproductive justice for immigrant women by advocating for:

• Universal health coverage that provides adequate health services and care for all immigrant women regardless of legal and economic status.

• Reproductive health care coverage financed through public funds provided to all immigrant women regardless of legal and economic status.

• The repeal of all federal and state level restrictions on access to reproductive health services by immigrant women and their children.

• Social services for survivors of domestic violence, sexual assault and trafficking.

• Equitable access to non-employment based public benefits for all immigrant women.

• Equitable access to confidential and non-coercive family planning services and contraceptive equity.

• Equitable access to linguistically appropriate, culturally competent, and medically accurate reproductive health care services.

• Equitable access to comprehensive sex and sexuality education.

• Technical and training support to service providers, attorneys, community advocates, and other professionals (both governmental and non-governmental) working with immigrant women at the local, state, federal, and international levels.

NCIWR promotes economic justice for all immigrant women by advocating for:

• Fair and just trade agreements that respect the resources–natural and human–of foreign nations.

• Equitable access to jobs with equal pay and benefits including health insurance, sick days, maternity and family leave, credit, insurance, pensions, fringe benefits, and Social Security.

• The elimination of punitive federal and state government policies that target immigrant women based on immigration or documentation status.

• Increasing public awareness, education, and understanding of the various forms of violence perpetrated against immigrant women associated with employment and lack of institutional access which extends beyond economic spheres. Namely, mental violence is perpetrated against immigrant women when their value is pinned solely to economic contributions, and such violence has a long lasting impact on immigrant communities.

• Increasing public awareness, education, and understanding of the fundamental and pivotal role immigrant women have in the familial, cultural and social spheres of every person residing in the United States.

• Sharing best employment practices throughout the network locally, nationally, and globally.

• The elimination of all forms of human trafficking through a survivor-centered advocacy model that opposes all forms of exploitation.

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