Friday, July 17, 2009

OMNI Center's Peace & Justice Immigrants Forum is at 6 p.m. today at Night Bird Books on Dickson Street

OMNI Friends
Ms. Hoeller is a local expert on immigration who combines both knowledge of the law and compassion for the vulnerable in our society. Her new book sets forth a coherent, comprehensive approach. Bring your questions and comments. Her talk begins at six, with plenty of time for you. Come early and stay afterward for refreshments and getting acquainted with others who care. Dick

Sponsored by OMNI Center for Peace, Justice and Ecology
Contact Gladys Tiffany, 973-9049, c 283-6361

6p.m. NIGHTBIRD BOOKS, Dickson St., Fayetteville
Speaker: Susie Hoeller, author of IMPASSE: Border Walls or Welcome the Stranger (2008)
Coordinator: Dick Bennett, 442-4600
Moderator: Carl Barnwell
Greeter: Jeff Seidensticker
Refreshments: Frank Head
Photos: Aubrey Shepherd
Video: Jonathan Gibbs
Flyer and Poster: Chris Delacruz
Distribution of Flyer and Poster: Dick
(1) The current status of the Obama Administration Immigration Enforcement Policy and immigration reform bills in Congress.
(2) The thesis of Impasse, that immigration reform has to be “holistic” and include labor law reforms to protect American workers and immigrants from unscrupulous employers who keep lowering wages and working conditions across the board.
(3) The lack of justice and often inhumane treatment that has been applied to immigrants who have been rounded up in 287g programs, mass raids on factories and meat processing plants, and the plight of detained immigrant children in US jails and detention facilities. The Obama Administration is changing these conditions, but much still needs to be done.
(4) How citizens who are concerned about immigration reform can influence the upcoming debate in Congress.
Biography: Susie Hoeller is an international business attorney who represents immigrants, asylum seekers, and refugees on a pro bono basis ( She is President of the American Center for International Policy Studies ( In 2007, Hoeller authored Recall, Food and Toy Safety: An American Crisis. In 2009 she authored The Ethical Food Manifesto. She lives in Bentonville.
Have you heard about this? Comprehensive immigration reform has a real chance of passing this year. A coalition of over 300 organizations, including the major labor unions, have teamed up to put pressure on Congress to (finally) fix the immigration system this year:
President Obama pledged to pass comprehensive immigration reform during his campaign ( ), so with this broad, national effort, there's a real chance of it actually getting passed in 2009.
That said, the anti-immigration troops are *very* loud and organized. President Obama and Congress need to know that when the time comes to stand up for immigration reform, the supporters of reform are going to be loud and organized and help pass immigration reform for America.
Go to the website. I hope you'll consider signing on, too.
Thanks. Susie Hoeller
P.S. Here's some more background on the issue: American-born workers suffer if there is a vast pool of undocumented workers who are easily exploited by employers who seek unfair advantage. All of us are stronger if all of us have rights. Untargeted raids in workplaces and neighborhoods and rogue enforcement agents at all levels are terrorizing immigrant workers and dividing families without making us any safer and without fixing the real problems with our immigration system. Our out-of-date laws force many American families to remain separated for years – and in some cases, decades – because of backlogs and barriers to family unification in our immigration system. Finally, our outdated laws are practically unenforceable, driving too much immigration into the black market and not enough immigration through legal and orderly channels for immigrants who want to work in this country. The result is hundreds of thousands of immigrants being detained each year, hundreds of thousands deported, people forced to take life-threatening risks because they cannot enter legally, people dying in the desert, and people dying in detention due to awful conditions and official neglect. We can and must do better. Susie Hoeller
Books and Articles: (see Hoeller’s excellent biblio., the books and films I list supplement her references)
--Hoeller, Suzie. IMPASSE: Border Walls or Welcome the Stranger (2008) is a book for all who wish to repair our broken immigration system. Unlike many others writing on immigration issues, the author rejects the extremist and divisive rhetoric which has helped to sustain the policy impasse in Congress
Dunn, Timothy. The Militarization of the U.S.-Mexico Border, 1978-1992: Low-Intensity Conflict Doctrine Comes Home. CMAS Books, U Texas, 1996.
---Omer, Peter, ed. Underground America : Narratives of Undocummented Lives. McSweeney, 2008. Rev. FFW (8-7-08). 24 stories (out of 60 interviewed) of economic and political refugees who risked much to make it to the Land of the Free.--Schrag, Peter. “Blowback at the Border: How Our Obsession with Drug Prohibition and Unregulated Guns Gave Us Mexican Drug Wars.” The Nation (May 4, 2009).
--Bacon, David. Illegal People: How Globalization Creates Migration and Criminalizes Immigrants. Beacon, 2008. Documents how undocumented workers have become the world’s most exploited workforce. “Illegals” of all nationalities are central in the global struggle for economic justice.
Made in L.A. creates a climate of empathy and understanding around immigration reform and helps lay the foundation for change.!
Dick Bennett

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