U.S. SEEKS TO DEPORT PERSIAN
During the Persian
Gulf war, the United States decided to evacuate to the U.S a number of families,
the majority of which are stateless Palestinians, who had been living in
Kuwait. All but approximately 50 of these families have "adjusted"
their status and been allowed to remain permanently in the U.S.
But these 47 families (approximately 200 individuals) are facing the threat of deportation by the Immigration and Naturalization Service. The temporary status they were given terminated on December 31, 1996.
As stateless persons they have nowhere to go. They deserve our help, especially since nearly half are children who are U.S. citizens. Please write or call your congressional representatives. This is urgent. The new Immigration Bill, which makes these families vulnerable, went into effect on April 1. Once in the U.S., these families began making a life and continued to have additional children born here. These children are automatically American citizens and comprise nearly half of those facing deportation. These families are primarily professional and technical people who depend upon no one else for their support and rely upon their own labor. They have an excellent record as "citizens to be." They are an asset to this country.
Rep. Nick Rahall has introduced a bill in the House of Representatives (H.R. 793) which provides permanent residency status for these families and will enable them to remain in the U.S. Initial sponsors of the bill in the House are Reps. Sidney Yates , (IL) , Zoe Lofgren (CA), John Dingell (MI) and Danny K. Davis (IL), who deserve some thank-you letters.
ADC is seeking a sponsor for a companion bill in the Senate. If the bill does not secure a majority in Congress, it will not pass. We must urge our representatives to support it. We need your help to secure that support.
1) The children of these families who were born in the U.S. are American citizens whose primary language is English. They are growing up as Americans. It is shocking to see the U.S. government preparing to deport its own citizens.
2) Deportation would impose severe hardship on these families. Kuwait will not accept them. Most of the parents hold Jordanian passports, but are not Jordanian citizens. Even if Jordan would accept them, Jordan is already burdened with tens of thousands of Palestinians who left Kuwait during the war. In Jordan the families will have no economic assistance, no jobs in an economy that is already burdened with unemployed people, and no health care for their children.
3) Growing up in a refugee camp in Jordan means a life of impoverishment. If the children are raised under hardship conditions abroad, those who are citizens likely to return to the U.S. as adults without the education and skills that would make them independent and successful.
4) This is a small group of people -- 47 families. Allowing them to adjust their status to permanent residency and continue to raise their American citizen children here will impose no burden on this country. They are gainfully employed professionals and pay the same taxes as American citizens. They have successfully begun the process of becoming productive members of society.
5) Already some of these parents are losing their work permits. Their children who are over 18 cannot register for schools.
Please write or call your elected representatives. Ask Representatives to co-sponsor H.R.793.
Ask Senators to co-sponsor and support the companion bill when it is introduced.
Your Representative, House of Representatives
Washington, DC 20515
Your Senator , U.S. Senate
Key Members of Congress: Chapters in Texas, Illinois, North Carolina, Michigan and Massachusetts should make extra efforts to see that the following representatives get large numbers of letters.
Rep. Lamar Smith (R-TX, 21st district), Chair, House Immigration Subcommittee. No email address.
Rep. Henry J. Hyde (R-IL, 6th district), Chair, House Judiciary Committee. No email address.
Melvin L. Watt (D-NC, 12th district ), Ranking Minority Member, House Immigration Subcommittee E-Mail melmail.hr.house.gov
Senator Spencer Abraham (R-MI), Chair, Immigration Subcommittee E-Mail: email@example.com
Senator Edward Kennedy (D-MA), Ranking Minority Member, Immigration Subcommittee (Ask him to be the original sponsor of the Senate bill.)
U.S Senators with Constituent E-Mail Addresses
Cc your letters to ADC at firstname.lastname@example.org
American-Arab Anti-Discrimination Committee
4201 Connecticut Ave., N.W., Suite 300
Washington, D.C. 20008, U.S.A.
Tel: (202) 244-2990, Fax: (202) 244-3196