Springfield Opinions: Immigration Reform

By Nick Schwarz

Springfield, Ore.- Immigration reform is the hot topic in the senate right now and so far no bill has been proposed. With a growing population of illegal immigrants comes the need to reexamine laws regarding their status in the country.

No Specific bill has been announced but the proposal as of now aims to increase border security, provide a path to citizenship for illegal immigrants and create an effective employment verification system to prevent identity theft while ending hiring of unauthorized workers.

While there was opposition from some conservative senators it appears that both sides are working together to find a solution.

Springfield residents were questioned to see what their opinions were of the proposed bill.

April Slater, owner of Memento Ink, said, “I believe that people absolutely should have the right to immigrate here legally.”

She quickly adds, “But I don’t think people should be given amnesty or allowed to stay illegally. I think that it’s a burden on our education system and I think that it creates a burden on our family services.”

It appears, that like the senate, Slater is not entirely sure what the answer is.

Napat Pattarakulrapee is a server at Terese’s Place. When asked about the immigration proposal she said, “I agree with him, it’s pretty hard for immigrants. Lots of immigrants work really hard.”

“When I see homeless people asking for money, I never see immigrant people. Homeless people have everything from the government (referring to benefits). Everyone should have the same rights,” she said.

Pattarakulrapee feels there is a deeper issue and that immigrants can’t be blamed for everything going wrong.

Given the chance she feels that many immigrants could become hard working members of society if the path to citizenship was an easier one. She currently has a green card and is married to her husband who is a citizen.

Not everyone feels that immigrants should be given an easier path to citizenry.

Jessie Riley is the owner of Riley’s Second Hand and doesn’t feel the solution is allowing everyone to gain citizenry.

“You can’t just move there because you want to hang out there you know, you actually have to bring something…,” he said.

Glen Myers feels the government still has work to do concerning taking care of its own citizens.

“I understand it’s a monumental task, but we’ve got a monumental problem here. I’m one of those that think we should take care of our own before we save the world,” he said.

Whatever the outcome, it appears that both sides in the senate are working towards a solution.

“”We’re so close,” said a lawmaker who is familiar with the House negotiations. “No one has walked away yet. A decision has to be made on both sides: Are we willing to walk away from all that we’ve gotten done? Am I willing to walk away from it because I don’t get exactly what I want?””

Talk will continue in the next weeks and it is only a matter of time before a decision is made.

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