The immigration debate is boiling over. Americans are losing the ability to understand and talk to one another about immigration. The new Arizona immigration law makes it clear that we must find a way to connect on a human level.
Green Card Stories does just that. The book depicts 50 recent immigrants with permanent residence or citizenship in dramatic narratives of about 1,000 words each, accompanied by artistic photos. Rather than couching immigration in terms of economics or politics, these stories appeal to the heart.
Each story is as old as the foundation of this immigrant nation, but also reflects the global trends and conflicts of the 21st century: the aspiring dentist who fled war-torn Sudan with just three T-shirts and a pair of shoes; the Caribbean-born orthopedic surgeon facing deportation; the Iraqi bodyguard for U.S. troops blinded by a car bomb; a former Mexican farm worker and school dropout turned high school principal. Arriving from all corners of the globe, coming for work, love, to study or escape persecution, they all share a steely resourcefulness and a fierce love for America. Green Card Stories tells the true story of our nation: E pluribus unum--out of many, one.Read more...
IPC Staff Attorney Ben Winograd was quoted in today's WNYC article about the hesitation that some immigrants may feel when applying for deferred action - especially if they have a previous immigration violation or have used fake social security numbers in the past: Read more...
Chun Wah Chan Known as CW, was born in southern China, but grew up in Hong Kong. He finished college in Hong Kong and came to the U of C in the early 1970s to take up social work. For a number of years he served as the Director of Psychiatric Social Work for the Cook County Hospital. In 1978 he and his close friend Bernie Wong founded the Chinese American Service League to help Chinese immigrants find their way in the street of Chicago.
He speaks three versions of Chinese: Mandarin, Cantonese and Chew Jow, (phonetic) a dialect spoken by many Chinese from Southeast Asia. Because of his language capability, he has been able to cross the different lines of the Chinese community here in the U.S. By a trick of fate, as he tells me, CW moved from social work to business and when his father was tragically killed in a car accident, CW took over the family business. He became the president of the Pioneer Aquaculture Inc. a producer and distributor of freshwater fish. But, perhaps more importantly, he became a political liaison, between Chicago's Chinatown business and city government.
His many years of professional experience in the field of social work made him an extremely valuable leader in the business community in Chinatown. He has held many leadership positions and in fact, was the longest serving President of the Chinatown Chamber in Chicago. He has done much to bring the Chinese business community into America's mainstream CW was quoted as saying, "If you go to Chinatown, do not think of it as a visit to China Because Chinatown is part of the American community, a classic Chicago neighborhood."
AILF is proud to honor Mr. C.W. Chan for his tremendous efforts on behalf of his community and country.
Katherine Benton-Cohen, Ph.D.is an Arizona native, and now lives in Washington, D.C., where she is associate professor of history at Georgetown University. She is the author of Borderline Americans: Racial Division and Labor War in the Arizona Borderlands (Harvard University Press, 2009), and a former fellow at the Woodrow Wilson International Center for Scholars. She is currently writing a book about the Dillingham Commission of 1907‐1911, the largest study of immigrants in U.S. history, which led to the immigration restrictions and quotas of the 1920s.
In a recent op-ed in the Chicago Sun-Times titled "How Immigration Reform Would Help Chicago," Stephen Bouman cited the Immigration Policy Center while making the case for the economic benefits of passing immigration reform:
"The Immigration Policy Center’s researchers find that Latino and Asian entrepreneurs and consumers already add tens of billions of dollars and tens of thousands of jobs to Illinois’s economy. Imagine how Chicago’s economy could buzz if all immigrants were buying homes, investing in education, and planning for secure futures."
Immediately after the Presidential election of 2008, it was quickly apparent through exit polling that Latino, Asian, and African-American voting had expanded dramatically compared to the 2004 election. Census Bureau data released late last month confirms the tremendous growth in voting among these groups. Today, the Immigration Policy Center (IPC) releases a fact check, Latino and Asian Clout in the Voting Booth, which shows how much the electoral power of racial and ethnic minorities increased in just four years.