Immigration reform town hall meetings to be held

Our current immigration system tears families apart. Millions of families, including thousands Arkansans, have been separated from loved ones or live in the constant fear of having a family member deported. Arkansas immigrant groups applaud President Obama for making immigration reform his top priority and are encouraged by the bipartisan plan issued by a group of Senators, while stressing the importance of lawmakers focusing on keeping families together.

Given the surging momentum around immigration reform, local organizations have come together to host a statewide series of town hall discussions, entitled “Immigration Reform: The Impact on Arkansas Immigrants”, or consultas populares in Spanish, taking place:

  • Saturday, Feb. 9, 3- 5 p.m. at the Fort Smith Adult Education Center, 501 S. 20th Street, Fort Smith
  •  Sunday, Feb. 10,  2- 4 p.m. at St. Edward Church, Gymnasium, 805 Sherman St., Little Rock
  • Saturday, Feb. 16, 2-4 p.m. at Allen Park Community Center, 3609 Race St., Jonesboro
  • Sunday, Feb. 17, 2 -4 p.m. at The Civic Center, 2323 S Old Missouri Rd D1  Springdale
  • Saturday, Feb. 23, 2-4 p.m. at Salon el Milenio, 212 Stillwell Ave, DeQueen

Additional locations are still being planned

At the town halls, immigration experts, activists and attorneys will provide information about new immigration reforms passed in 2012, which are already having a positive impact on the lives of Arkansas immigrants; and an update about political debate at the state and federal levels. There will be a question and answer session allowing participants to voice their priorities in regard to immigration reform, and details will be provided about local activities that Arkansans can take to inform political decisions. These town halls will primarily be conducted in Spanish, with English translation offered.

Partner organizations who will be co-hosting this immigration series include: Arkansas United Community Coalition, Arkansas Coalition for DREAM, Hispanic Community Services, Inc, Catholic Charities Immigration Services of Northwest Arkansas, Northwest Arkansas Workers’ Justice Center and the OMNI Center.

This series will lay the foundation for state participation in a national day of mobilization in Washington, D.C. April 10, 2013, that is being planned by the Fair Immigration Reform Movement and the Service Employees International Union as part of the national “Keeping Families Together” campaign, an umbrella effort to ensure that upcoming immigration reforms seek just outcomes for families and pathway to citizenship for undocumented immigrants.

Submitted Information

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