Oregon Legislature

Oregon’s Quest for Secure Driver’s Licenses

For over a decade, we’ve been engaged in a battle for a secure driver’s license in Oregon. Much of the drama has been self-inflicted and it’s about time we get with the program and move on.

It started in 2005 when Congress passed, and President Bush signed the Real ID act, which calls for a more secure driver’s license. We don’t have a national ID card, so state-issued driver’s licenses are accepted by the federal government as identification when boarding a plane or entering a federal building.

States have different standards, and so Congress, in response to the 9/11 Commission, set uniform, secure, standards for states to apply. Driven by costs and other considerations, states are in various levels of compliance. For years, Homeland Security has been granting waivers to states, including Oregon, if they make progress. Now, the gig is up.

In 2007, Governor Kulongoski issued an executive order mandating comprehensive and meaningful identification to be issued a driver’s license, which brought Oregon many steps closer to compliance. This is why you have to practically bring your file cabinet down to the DMV to renew your driver’s license.

The main shortfall from full compliance with Real ID is that the DMV does not permanently retain an image of the documentation you provide. In eight years, when you have to renew again, you’ll have to bring the file cabinet back down to the DMV. Indeed, in 2009, the Legislature passed a law which forbids ODOT from expending any resources to comply with the Real ID act.

As the Kulongoski executive order made it harder for persons not legally in the country to get drivers licenses, a solution was sought in creating a “driver card” for those who could not prove legal status in the US. It passed both houses and was signed into law by Governor John Kitzhaber in a front porch ceremony on May 1, 2013. Since it did not have an emergency clause, it could be challenged by a citizens’ referendum, and it was. In an embarrassment to the legislative establishment, enough signatures were gathered (many by me) and it was put to the people in the form of Measure 88 in 2014. It was repealed by a 2:1 margin and a majority in 35 of Oregon’s 36 counties.

So, as our waiver runs out, I and Senator Chuck Thomsen (R-Hood River) have separately introduced bills in the House and the Senate to repeal the prohibition on ODOT and allow the agency to comply with Real ID. This makes even more sense in light of the fact that the DMV has embarked on a $90 million software upgrade, and this could easily be included. Another bill introduced in the Senate by Senator Bill Hansell (R-Athena) creates a new, “Star ID” which complies with Real ID but leaves in place the current driver’s license as a less secure – and I think open to fraud — option.

Let’s not mess this up. Let’s have one Oregon Driver’s License, compliant with Real ID, and quit making me take my file cabinet down to the DMV each time I have to renew.

State Representative Mike Nearman (R-Independence) is on the board of directors of Oregonians for Immigration Reform and wants to make boarding a plane easier and more secure.

Brown: Extend Medicaid to more than 17,000 kids

SALEM — Gov. Kate Brown spoke Monday in support of a bipartisan proposal to expand Medicaid coverage to the more than 17,000 children currently ineligible due to their immigration status.

Brown — whose two-year budget included the estimated $55 million the coverage is expected to cost — is joined in her support for the measure by nearly 40 advocacy groups, health care providers and unions.

“It is our duty to ensure that our youngest Oregonians have the tools to grow into healthy adults, with access to education, health care and a bright future,” Brown said during a meeting of the state House Health Care Committee.

It’s a departure from a proposal by top Oregon budget writers to cut Medicaid coverage to roughly 355,000 adults to help fill the state’s $1.8 billion budget hole.

People who joined the program under the Affordable Care Act’s 2014 eligibility expansion would lose coverage.

Advocates, however, characterize the measure, called Cover All Kids, as building on strides the state has made over the years to increase access to health care coverage for children. Lawmakers voted in 2009 to expand kids’ access to Medicaid and subsidized health insurance policies. In 2010, the Affordable Care Act allowed Oregon to expand its Medicaid program to kids in families with incomes up to 300 percent of the federal poverty level. The coverage only applied to lawfully present children, however.

Still, it’s estimated about 2 percent of children in Oregon remain uninsured, the majority of whom are ineligible for coverage because they’re in the country illegally. House Bill 2726, along with its counterpart in the Senate, would extend Medicaid coverage to anyone under age 19 with family incomes up to 300 percent of the federal poverty level — $48,720 annually for a family of two or $73,800 for a family of four — regardless of immigration status.

Medicaid programs in California, Washington state, Illinois, New York, Massachusetts and Washington, D.C., already cover children in the country illegally.

The measure’s sponsors include Republicans Rep. John Huffman of The Dalles, Rep. Andy Olson of Albany and Sen. Brian Boquist of Dallas. Democratic sponsors include Sen. Arnie Roblan of Coos Bay, Rep. Diego Hernandez of Portland, Sen. Laurie Monnes Anderson of Gresham, Rep. Teresa Alonso León of Woodburn and Rep. Pam Marsh of Ashland.

Huffman told the audience at Monday’s hearing the bill makes sense both morally and economically.

“Morally, because I have always advocated for supporting our most vulnerable citizens,” he said. Economically, because healthy kids miss less school and their parents miss fewer days of work.

Former Republican Rep. Vic Gilliam also submitted testimony in support of the measure, which he wrote would not be just another government “entitlement” program but would strengthen communities.

Linda Roman, director of health policy and government relations for the Oregon Latino Health Coalition, said in an interview the issue boils down to values.

“I think across party lines, across chambers of the House and the Senate, we all believe that every child in our state on day one of school needs to be prepared and ready to learn,” she said. “I think our legislators in Oregon really understand that and embrace that.”

Even though the coverage would cost the state an estimated $55 million over the next two years, Roman said it would save money in the long run. Access to health care prevents treatable illnesses from becoming expensive health care crises, she said. Further, Roman said children with insurance perform better in school, are more likely to graduate high school and contribute more in taxes later in life.

“We’ve seen that it works,” she said. “It saves money.”

All of the written testimony submitted to the House Health Care Committee ahead of its hearing Monday urged lawmakers to support the measure. Organizations included the Oregon Primary Care Association, Basic Rights Oregon, the Oregon Nurses Association, the Oregon School-Based Health Alliance and several others. Insurance carrier Moda Health and health systems Legacy Health and Providence Health System also voiced support.

Monday’s session was a public hearing; a vote was not held. The Senate Health Care Committee will host a hearing on the measure Tuesday afternoon. Brown is not scheduled to testify at that hearing, but state Sen. Jeff Kruse, a Republican from Roseburg, and Koblan will speak in support of the bill, according to the Oregon Latino Health Coalition.

Plan to provide free health care to unauthorized immigrant kids in Oregon draws praise, criticism

SALEM — When an errant baseball hit her in the face years ago, Fatima Preciado’s lip split. Soon, the 8-year-old’s cut became infected.

Preciado’s mother tried to clean the cut with rubbing alcohol and heal it with ointments, but never took her to a doctor. Without health insurance, those types of “house remedies” were often the only medical treatment her family could turn to, Preciado said.

Norma Baltazar says she struggled for years to get dental health care for her young son, Raul. Finally, when a molar in the back of his mouth grew too painful, she rushed him to the emergency room. Without health insurance, she had to pay $900 to have the tooth removed.

Both Preciado and Baltazar are unauthorized immigrants, having separately come to the United States from Mexico more than a decade ago.

Today, Preciado is an 18-year-old Portland State University student and a so-called “Dreamer,” having secured a work permit and deportation deferral under former President Obama’s DACA program.

Baltazar, a Salem house cleaner, brought Raul to America when he was only 3, making him an unauthorized immigrant as well. She’s since had another child, a daughter, who, by virtue of her birth of U.S. soil, is a legal U.S. citizen.

Now, both women are advocating for a new state law, dubbed “Cover All Kids” by supporters, that would extend government-­funded health insurance in Oregon to many unauthorized immigrants under the age of 19.

The proposal would give government-funded health insurance to an estimated 17,600 unauthorized immigrants, at a cost of $55 million in the biennium that starts July 1. Critics blast the concept and the price tag, especially given state government’s cash crisis.

But supporters say it’s a humane and sensible idea.

“My mom always was scared that I would get hurt or get sick because we didn’t have insurance,” Preciado said of her childhood. “I just wanted to play.

“Kids don’t worry about getting hurt, they don’t understand,” she added.

The proposed policy would let those young immigrants receive free health insurance through the Oregon Health Plan, the state’s version of Medicaid, if their families make less than 300 percent of the federal poverty level.

That’s the same eligibility requirement as that for an Oregon minor who is a legal resident now, and it translates to an annual income of $73,000 for a family of four. The coverage would apply only to the unauthorized immigrant children of the household, not the adults.

Faces opposition

The proposal is backed by Gov. Kate Brown, House Speaker Tina Kotek, a Portland Democrat, a contingent of Democratic and Republican state legislators, and many Oregon health care providers.

Similar policies are in place in California, Washington, New York, Illinois and Massachusetts.

Still, the costly proposal in Oregon faces significant headwinds this session as the state must close a $1.8 billion budget gap — a hole that’s in large part the result of the growing cost of the Oregon Health Plan for legal Oregon residents.

Senate Bill 558 and House Bill 2726 would make 17,600 noncitizens newly eligible for the Health Plan, according to early estimates.

The state would have to cover the full cost of their health insurance, a projected $55 million in the 2017-19 budget. That’s different than for the rest of Oregon’s 1 million-strong Medicaid population, where the federal government picks up most of the tab.

The policy and its cost anger opponents of illegal immigration.

“We have a state that thinks it has a $1.8 billion budget gap and yet we’re considering giving more state benefits to thousands of illegal immigrants,” said Jim Ludwick of Oregonians for Immigration Reform. “It boggles the mind.”

Ludwick said his group doesn’t want “any harm to come to children.” But, he added, the bill, if passed, “could well be the foot in the door” for Oregon Health Plan coverage to be extended to unauthorized adult immigrants as well.

Despite progressive stances on many social issues, Oregon voters have sometimes resisted policies favoring unauthorized immigrants. In 2014, they thrashed, by a 2-to-1 ratio, a proposal to grant them short-term driving licenses.

“Emergency clauses”

SB 558 and HB 2726 both contain “emergency clauses,” however. That means that, if they pass, they’ll go into effect immediately and couldn’t be referred to voters.

Supporters say the cost of expanding Medicaid coverage to unauthorized minors would be a smart investment for the state. It would mean they could get more preventative health care, reducing their need for expensive emergency care, and allowing them to be more successful in school and later life.

“Oregon children should have the opportunity to be healthy and ready to learn, and Oregon families should feel confident that a medical event will not dramatically change the trajectory of their lives,” Gov. Brown told the House Health Care Committee on Monday.

Rep. John Huffman, a Republican from The Dalles, said the insurance expansion “makes sense morally and economically.”

“Covering kids up front saves us money down the road,” he added.

Patchwork of care

Both Preciado and Baltazar on Monday described a complicated patchwork of health care options available now to unauthorized immigrants. Many of them don’t or can’t get health insurance through work. They aren’t eligible for the subsidies to help people buy their own health insurance policies on the exchanges set up by Obamacare.

But unauthorized immigrants can receive primary medical care in some public schools and, for a fee, at 200 “safety net” community health centers around the state.

Hospitals, meanwhile, are required by federal law to provide free emergency care to all people, regardless of their residency status, when a patient is at risk of dying, losing a limb or is pregnant.

Many nonprofit groups also help unauthorized immigrants cover their regular health and dental care costs or help raise money for expensive treatments.

For example, Baltazar said Raul was recently found to have a heart condition that could eventually require surgery. She said she’s already identified a church-affiliated nonprofit that might help pay for the operation.

But, she added: “It still worries me. There’s no guarantee.”

“I don’t want (Raul) to worry about how we will pay for it,” Baltazar said. “Any child deserves to have a healthy life.”

Preciado said her older sister is intellectually disabled and prone to epileptic seizures. There were times during her childhood when the family, for weeks, couldn’t afford the daily medication her sister needed, Preciado recalled.

“There would be nights when I would awake from my mother’s frightened screams as she watched my eldest sister uncontrollably experience an epileptic seizure,” she said. “It was very traumatic.”

Oregon lawmakers push to repeal sanctuary state designation, make English official language

...Gov. Kate Brown, Senate Majority Leader Ginny Burdick, D-Portland, House Majority Leader Jennifer Williamson, D-Portland, and House Speaker Tina Kotek, D-Portland -- have all said they would not allow legislation rescinding Oregon's sanctuary state designation to progress. On the contrary, Brown has signed an executive order strengthening Oregon's laws shielding undocumented immigrants and ...

Williamson said in a statement Wednesday that she's "appalled" House Republicans would consider repealing the state's sanctuary designation.

"Oregon is better than this," she said. "This bill only serves to further divide and polarize our state, to scapegoat and threaten our immigrant populations."

House Bill 2917, sponsored by Esquivel, Nearman and Rep. Bill Post, R-Keizer, would require state agencies and contractors they hire to use the federal E-Verify system, which allows employers to check that prospective laborers are legally allowed to work in the United States.

Delivering on immigration

As he planned his improbable ascent, a peculiar election result from a small Western state might have caught Donald Trump’s eye. In 2014, Oregonians voted nearly 2-1 against a ballot measure that would have allowed the state to issue driver’s cards to people who could not prove legal residency in the United States. The proposal was a modest public-safety measure, but most voters saw it as an accommodation of illegal aliens and said no — hell no. Trump saddled that same emotional response and rode it into the White House. Now he must deliver.

The president made a start last week. He took executive action to start construction on a wall along the border between the United States and Mexico, a step toward fulfillment of one of his most frequently made, and most loudly echoed, campaign promises. And he moved to cut federal grants to “sanctuary cities,” striking a blow against the same political impulse that Oregon voters rejected in 2014: the impulse that crafts humane and pragmatic policies that are perceived as creating more space in American society for undocumented immigrants.

How these initial steps will be completed is far from clear. The cost and configuration of the wall — in some places, it’s likely to be more like a fence — are not known. Trump insists that Mexico will pay for the wall, an idea firmly rejected by Mexican President Enrique Pena Nieto. Various ideas for financing the wall have been advanced, including a 20 percent tax on goods imported to the United States from Mexico. Such a tax would be paid by American consumers, not Mexicans.

Pena Nieto had planned to meet with Trump this week, but the event was canceled after Trump reiterated his demand that Mexico pay for the wall. Trump will need to guard against creating problems that would prove far more costly than a border wall. A tax on exports to the United States would affect 80 percent of Mexico’s trade, damaging the country’s economy. Humiliating Pena Nieto, who is already politically unpopular, could open the door to a disruptive successor. Economic instability, political turmoil or both in Mexico would damage U.S. economic interests, create security concerns and trigger higher rates of illegal immigration.

The crackdown on sanctuary cities is similarly vague. The Trump administration has not defined what a sanctuary city is, but they come in several varieties. There are even sanctuary states, including Oregon. Many state and local governments, or the heads of their police agencies, have said that police will not inquire about the immigration status of people they contact. The aim is to keep the police from taking on the responsibilities of federal immigration officers, and to maintain trust among immigrant populations. Such policies involve setting priorities for public safety, not defiance of federal law.

In other cases, sanctuary cities decline to detain people suspected of being illegal immigrants until federal immigration agents can take custody of them. This is often due to a shortage of jail space or a lack of federal reimbursement for incarceration costs, not a refusal to cooperate in the enforcement of immigration laws.

Few jurisdictions that have labeled themselves sanctuaries are actively working to frustrate the enforcement of immigration laws — they’re just not cooperating to varying degrees. The Trump administration will have to draw the line between defiance and non-cooperation, and some grants can’t be withheld without congressional approval. Too far-reaching a cutoff would face legal action by cities or states on grounds that the U.S. government can’t compel them to spend their money to enforce federal laws.

Trump understood the emotional power of the immigration issue better than his rivals. But delivering on his promises will require coherent, constructive policies. Devising them will prove harder than tapping a vein of anger and resentment.


 

Law enforcement hands tied by Oregon Legislature

In 1987, the Oregon Legislature passed a bill making it against the law for our law enforcement officers to enforce the law.  It's time to put an end to this ridiculous loophole known as state statute 181A.820.

How many illegal aliens do you suppose are in Oregon and the only "crime" they have committed is to be in our country illegally - thus breaking our immigration laws?

Think about that for a moment...

Illegal aliens often come to this country illegally to work - which is in violation of our employment laws.  And, they are likely hired by an employer who knows full well that they are an illegal alien.

But, before securing employment, they must first acquire identification.  I hear that one can be bought on the streets for about $75.  It's not a quality ID, but it's enough to pass for the willing employer.   Isn't that against the law - to buy and sell fake identification?  And, whose identity is being stolen?  Yours, mine - or, your grandchild's?

Now, the only in the country illegally, illegal alien needs a way to get to their new found job.  They have a buddy that gets them a car which they proceed to drive to work - without a license or insurance.  That too, is against the law! 

So, please explain how it's a necessity to forego enforcement of our immigration laws to protect those that are only in our country illegally!

The Sheriffs of Oregon have released a statement - I encourage you to read it - then call your elected officials and tell them to repeal State Statute 181A.820

Medford and Grants Pass residents - Jan. 25th Townhall meeting

Alert date: 
2017-01-19
Alert body: 

State Representative

Duane Stark

House District 4

 


State Representative

Sal Esquivel

House District 6

News Release:  January 19, 2015

Contact:
Dawn Phillips-Rep Stark’s Office: 503.750.1764

Southern Oregon Legislators Host Town Hall January 25th in Eagle Point

(Salem)  Two Southern Oregon lawmakers will hold a Legislative Town Hall Wednesday January 25th in Eagle Point to preview some of the issues expected to be debated during the upcoming 2017 Session at the State Capitol in Salem.

The Town Hall starts at 6 pm on January 25th and is co-sponsored by State Representative Duane Stark (R-Grants Pass) and State Representative Sal Esquivel (R-Medford). Local residents are invited to attend the event which will be held at Eagle Point City Hall, 17 South Buchanan Avenue in Eagle Point.


“It’s important for us to touch bases with citizens in Southern Oregon before the legislative session gets underway this year,” said Representative Stark. “I wish we could host events like this in every corner of both of our legislative districts. Given the time constraints, we selected a location between both districts so we could have an opportunity to talk to people about the things that matter most in their lives.”

 

“There will be some significant challenges this time around,” said Representative Esquivel. “The state budget is going to mean some tough choices on critical issues such as human services, public safety, education, and others. There simply aren’t enough funds to go around for every program that folks want to see funded.”

 

For those who can’t make it to the Town Hall they can reach the legislators using the contact information below:

 

State Representative Duane Stark:

Rep.DuaneStark@oregonlegislature.gov
503.986.1404

 

State Representative Sal Esquivel
Rep.SalEsquivel@oregonlegislature.gov

503.986.1406

 

###

 

900 Court Street NE Salem, OR 97301   ¨   www.oregonlegislature.gov  

 

 


 

Sen. Wyden and state representatives pledge to protect undocumented immigrants at Oregon capitol

Around 600 Oregon protesters rallied around the state capitol in Salem on Jan. 14, showing support for elected representatives and organizers vowing to protect undocumented immigrants and their families.

Residents from across Oregon filled the Oregon State Capitol fountain grounds at 2:00 p.m. They cheered to speeches from U.S. Senator Wyden, state and district representatives, along with immigrant’s rights advocates. The leaders expressed defiance to President-elect Donald Trump’s campaign promises, which includes to overturn Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA) and deport 11 million undocumented immigrants.

“[Trump]’s policies lack empathy, lack compassion. They lack the understanding that undocumented workers and their families are key components of the American economy — and that they are Americans,” U.S. Sen. Ron Wyden said to the crowd, alongside a Spanish translator. Wyden told the Emerald that he will support the Bridge Act, a bipartisan legislation introduced to U.S. Senate last month to allow those receiving DACA to remain in the United States. DACA protects young undocumented immigrants who came to the U.S. as children from deportation, and provides them with temporary work permits.

Jeff Stone, Executive Director of Oregon Association of Nurseries, cited a report his group, along with business and civic leaders, released. According to the report, immigrants make up 10 percent of Oregon’s population and contributed $24.4 billion in taxes and earn 9 percent of state earnings.

“You are important,” Stone said. “In America, every immigrant class has come to our country and made it better. And one of our most enduring symbols — the statue of liberty — embodies the great torch of freedom that welcomes the world to our shores.”

The crowd became especially animated when newly-elected Oregon House of Representatives leader Teresa Alonso Leon was introduced. She became the first immigrant Latina to be elected to Oregon State Legislature.

The daughter of migrant workers, Leon described picking berries during summers to support her family. She eventually became the first person in her family to graduate from college, which she said was due to her hard-work, but not without the “kindness of dedicated educators.” One of Leon’s campaign goals was for increased college affordability.

“I remember years ago standing on these same steps as a young girl for the first time. When I was here then, I didn’t see anyone who looked like me,” Leon said in front of the capitol building. “Now, just days ago, my young niece Emma, was able to watch her tia be sworn in as state representative, and it brought tears to my eyes.” She said that Emma now aspires to be the first Latina president of the United States.

Fatima Preciado was the last speaker. Preciado is a DACA recipient, who was brought to America from Apatzingan, Mexico.

“As a four-year-old crossing the border, I did not understand the complexity, risk and sacrifice my parents were making by bringing me to this country,” Preciado said. “But now that I understand, I am not ashamed.”

Preciado was named 2016 Oregon Youth of the Year by Oregon’s Boys & Girls Clubs in her senior year, and then became the first in her family to attend a four-year university. But that could be taken away from her, if President-elect Trump follows through with his talk of repealing DACA.

“The threat is real and we need our state leaders to protect us from Trump’s dangerous and inhumane policies,” Preciado said.

The crowd then marched around the capitol — where two protestors held a banner with an image of the Statue of Liberty. It read “No Human Being is Illegal.”

Around 600 people from across Oregon rallied at the Oregon State Capitol, before marching around it. (Andrew Field / Emerald)

Salem Immigrant Rights Rally to denounce Trump agenda

Multiple nonprofits, including unions and immigrants rights groups, are traveling to Salem on Jan. 14 to participate in the United for Immigrants Rights Rally. Set a week prior to the Jan. 20 presidential inauguration...

Phil Carrasco with Grupo Latino de Accíon Directa is orchestrating a trip from Eugene to Salem...

“We do believe that a lot of these policies being proposed are really based in hate and funded by hate groups and xenophobic groups.” And, he says, they also believe that the right to be in this country and walk freely is an exclusive privilege.

Carrasco says there’s been a call to repeal the state’s sanctuary status, which would allow the federal government to use state resources to enforce immigration policy. He says the effort could possibly show up as a ballot measure.

This is not the first time a state law that affects immigrants would be addressed in the form of a ballot measure. In 2014, Measure 88 failed to garner enough votes to grant driver cards to all Oregon residents, though the Oregon Legislature passed Senate Bill 833, which permitted Oregonians to apply for driver cards, regardless of their immigration status.

Ultimately, SB 833 never went into effect.

Many people who do not have legal status in the U.S. pay taxes, funding roads, schools and other state resources, Carrasco says. “It’s important that it’s not just Latino-centric organizations participating,” he says.

Organizations representing health care, working families and labor unions are among the participants. Carrasco says these groups acknowledge that “an injury to one is an injury to all.”

Around 500 people are expected to attend, with 2,000 interested in the Facebook event. Carrasco invites anyone interested in attending and carpooling to contact him.

He adds that the event is “part of a national day of action to defend immigrant rights and to denounce Trump’s agenda of hate and exclusion in our state.”

The United for Immigrant Rights Rally is 11:30 am Saturday, Jan. 14, at the Capitol building in Salem. GLAD is on Facebook at latinocommunityactiongroup. And for carpool information contact Phil Carrasco at 541-337-6391.

Hundreds expected at rally against Trump's immigration proposals

SALEM — A pro-immigrant rally set for Saturday, Jan. 14, at the Oregon Capitol could draw several hundred demonstrators opposed to President-elect Donald Trump's positions on immigration.

U.S. Sen. Ron Wyden, U.S. Rep. Kurt Schrader and several state lawmakers are scheduled to participate in the rally from 11:30 a.m. to 1 p.m. on the steps of the Capitol.

As of Wednesday, Jan. 11, more than 500 people had indicated they plan to attend and 2,000 had expressed interest on the event's Facebook page.

The rally is one of 50 "National Day of Action Events Against Trump Policies," according to a news release by the One Oregon coalition.

Trump has said that he will seek to deport millions of undocumented immigrants from the country, end executive orders by President Obama that shield certain illegal immigrants from deportation, and start a Muslim registry.

The coalition is "deeply concerned about the impact this will have on immigrant and refugee communities, who are integral to Oregon's economy and future," said Diane Goodwin, a spokeswoman for Basic Rights Oregon, a member of One Oregon.

One of Obama's executive orders, known as Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals, or DACA, protects from deportation undocumented immigrants who were brought to the United States as children. Young people who are eligible must apply for the program every two years, receive a work permit and may attend college.

"There are more than 700,000 individuals nationally and about 15,000 in Oregon whose lives are at stake, whose ability to continue their education and their career is at stake based on what President-elect Trump does," said Andrea Williams, executive director of Causa. "A lot of times, they have never been to their home country, don't know the language or have not been there for a very long time."

State lawmakers who have given their RSVP for Saturday's rally include Portland Democrats Rep. Alyssa Keny-Guyer, Sen. Michael Dembrow, Rep. Diego Hernandez, and Rep. Rob Nosse. Woodburn Democrat Rep. Teresa Alonso Leon, who became a U.S. citizen just five years ago, also plans to attend.

The One Oregon coalition of 60 organizations opposes anti-immigrant policies. Immigrant rights organizations Causa, APANO and Unite Oregon lead the group.

The coalition plans to support state legislation in 2017 aimed at reducing racial profiling during police stops, expanding Medicaid to more children and increasing affordable housing funding.

There are no known counter protests to the event. Oregonians For Immigration Reform, which frequently clashes with Causa on policy proposals, had no plans for a counter demonstration Saturday, said OFIR President Cynthia Kendoll. OFIR has scheduled a meeting the same day as the demonstration to discuss the results of the election and 2017 legislation.

Trump's immigration proposals have begun to address many of the frustrations some Americans have had with immigration policy and practices, Kendoll said.

"I think the Trump administration has nailed it when he said we need to reassess what we are doing and why and how is it benefiting the United States," Kendoll said.

She said she supports Trump's plan to end the DACA program.

"Those parents made the choice for their children to pick them up and bring them to this country," Kendoll said. "I didn't make that choice for them."

OFIR attempted to advance ballot initiatives last year that would have made English the official language of Oregon, required businesses to use a federal program to verify citizenship of employees and required proof of citizenship to vote. The initiatives ultimately were tied up in court after immigrant rights organizations and the ACLU challenged the ballot titles.

OFIR plans to offer at least four pieces of legislation next session, though Kendoll declined to disclose specifics Wednesday, Jan. 11. None are expected to gain momentum in the Democratic-controlled Legislature.

Also published in the East Oregonian

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