The Illinois Coalition for Immigrant and Refugee Rights wants a bill drafted and ready for committee consideration in the U.S. Senate by March 21st.
Yesenia Sanchez, a member of the coalition, says they’re activating the grass roots, sending 5,000 post cards to several members of the Illinois congressional delegation including U. S. Representatives Aaron Schock and Rodney Davis.
Lawrence Benito, chief executive, Illinois Coalition for Immigrant and Refugee Rights, explains what his group wants.
“By March 21st, ICIRR and national partner Fair Immigration Reform Movement want to see a bill that includes a path to citizenship, not more enforcement," says Benito. "A real path that keeps families together and reunites families that have been separated."
The group says eventual citizenship for those who are here now illegally must be part of any reform.
Billy Lawless, board member of the Illinois Restaurant Association, says granting legal status and citizenship is a better way to deal with illegal immigrants than throwing them out.
“Deporting all undocumented immigrants in Illinois would cost $11.4 billion in economic output and nearly 123,00 jobs," says Lawless.
The group also plans to send post cards to U.S. Representatives Peter Roskam, Randall M. Hultgren, Cheri Bustos, William Enyart, and U.S. Senator Mark Kirk. The other members are considered to be already on board or a lost cause.