"Serious moments call for serious discussion, and action," writes Javier H. Valdés, Co-Executive Director of Make the Road New York in the Gotham Gazette. "And so it is with immigration politics in our country today." Make the Road New York, which builds the power of Latino communities to achieve dignity and justice, is a key partner on the NIIC 2015 Executive Committee along with the Massachusetts Immigrant and Refugee Advocacy Coalition, joining co-hosts NPNA and the New York Immigration Coalition.
The movement for immigrant justice, he writes, has clearly won tremendous victories in the last few years, including President Obama's deferred action for DREAMers and for parents of US citizen children and others. Yet, we continue to confront intransigence in Congress and barriers to immigration relief. Valdés highlights NIIC 2015 an opportunity to come together to create a path forward:
This moment clearly calls for action—as immigrant groups around the country continue to mobilize against anti-immigrant forces and advocate for sensible federal, state, and local immigration policies—but it also warrants reflection.
And that's why, this year, New Yorkers should be extremely excited that we're hosting the National Immigrant Integration Conference (NIIC, niic2015.org), the country's largest annual conference dedicated to discussions about how to enrich our democracy by welcoming and integrating immigrants into the fabric of our nation.
To be held at the Brooklyn Marriott from December 13-15, the NIIC will bring together immigrant leaders and advocates from across the country to discuss issues like the implementation of deferred action, how to ensure workplace justice and workforce development for immigrant workers, and where our immigrant rights struggles fit into the landscape of other social movements.
And there's simply no better place to have these discussions than New York. With roughly 3 million immigrants representing nearly 40 percent of the population, 45 percent of the workforce, and 49 percent of small business owners, immigrants are an essential part of our city's dynamic economy and culture.
Then register for NIIC 2015 and book your hotel today!