I’m happy to share that the Ft. Wayne News-Sentinel yesterday published a great piece by Rev. Dr. Yohannes Mengsteab, Director of Ministry Programs at The Lutheran Foundation and member of the LIRS board‘s executive committee.
In his August 1 op-ed, “Senate Immigration Bill Would be a Step Forward for Businesses, Communities,” Rev. Dr. Mengsteab writes:
It’s important to keep in mind how much Indiana businesses have at stake in [the vote on immigration reform]. Indiana needs a stable labor force and job creators to stay competitive economically. This is where new Americans can and do have a huge impact. The daily labor that first-generation immigrants provide in cities like Indianapolis is not theoretical: It is real. Moreover, people who leave behind everything familiar — family, friends, jobs, home — to journey into the unknown are often entrepreneurial. The U.S. Chamber of Commerce has found that immigrants create new businesses at a higher rate than native-born Americans. Their investment of personal capital and back-breaking work can revitalize neighborhoods.
These contributions stand in contrast to the drain that our broken immigration system imposes on America. It’s a status quo that often leaves families torn apart by deportations, businesses struggling to find productive workers and churches trying to keep fearful congregants from fleeing. Congress must pass immigration reform that deals with this crisis now — because keeping families together is vital to our congregations and communities, and because reform is smart for our economy and our country.
Rev. Dr. Mengsteab, who came to the United States in 1983 as a refugee, further writes:
In reality, it’s not just me and other Lutherans across America who are speaking up for immigration reform. We’re united with the majority of Americans who are calling for reform that keeps families together and offers a roadmap to earned citizenship for 11 million aspiring new Americans.
You can read the entire piece by clicking the link in the headline above. Please show your support for Rev. Dr. Mengsteab by leaving a positive comment, promoting the piece through Facebook and other social media, and sending the link to your friends, colleagues, and family.
Fair and compassionate immigration reform now faces a tough fight in the House of Representatives. As we struggle to make that happen, it’s critically important that people learn the facts from op-eds like this one. We’re very thankful to Rev. Dr. Mengsteab not only for writing this piece, but also for his leadership on World Refugee Day. We’re also grateful to the Ft. Wayne News-Sentinel for publishing his op-ed.
You can raise your own voice for fair immigration reform through the LIRS Action Center. Also, please don’t forget to sign up to receive alerts from this blog, and check out our new Immigration Reform Mythbuster. Thank you!