All people deserve an equal, dignified existence and the ability to live free of the harassment of state authorities regardless of their immigration status. Socialists understand that the primary cause of immigration is capitalism. Centuries of capitalism and imperialism, including in the present moment, have created a global system of unequal development which manifests in social, political and economic instability. Climate change caused by capitalist industry is destroying ecosystems and ways of life worldwide. Those who come to the United States are refugees from the brutal conditions that are in large part the consequence of our country’s policies.
The ruling class seeks to maintain the status quo of immigration policy, forcing immigrants into precarious and exploitative labor conditions, pitting immigrant workers against citizen workers, and undermining workers’ ability to organize.
We recognize the importance of struggling for immigrant rights because we know that ending the stratification of workers on the basis of citizenship status empowers the broader and deeper organization of the working class. In the face of mainstream immigration reform that pits resident immigrants against future migrants, we must fight for policies that expand rights and protections to all regardless of when they migrate. While we recognize that our legislative capacity in New York is not enough to abolish ICE and Customs and Border Protection (CBP), we also recognize that the expansion of rights for all New Yorkers, regardless of citizenship status, actively undermines the criminalization of undocumented people and the power of federal immigration enforcement.
We seek to struggle together, regardless of immigration status, for our collective liberation from capitalist exploitation.
Immigrants’ Rights Are Workers’ Rights
Extend labor rights to all workers regardless of immigration status or occupation. All New Yorkers deserve the right to unionize, workplace protections, and fair wages, inclusive of safeguards against federal audits and raids.
Guarantee fair labor and wage protections to New York farmworkers— many of whom are undocumented immigrants — including statutory protections and a system for labor organizing, living wages, worker’s compensation protections, unemployment insurance, notification requirements and other benefits.
Pass legislation to ensure that workers can collect on wage theft judgments
Amend New York’s Workers’ Compensation law to ensure greater access to medical care and workers’ compensation benefits for low-wage, immigrant workers.
End the practice of DHS and ICE reporting as a form of employer retaliation against workers
Ensure fair labor practices and labor rights for domestic workers, including fair pay for home health care workers and an end to 24-hour workdays.
Civil Guarantees for All New Yorkers
Grant state citizenship to all New Yorkers.
Expand the right to vote in local and state elections to all New Yorkers, and the ability to hold political office, regardless of immigration status.
Guarantee driver’s licenses and state IDs to all New Yorkers, regardless of immigration status.
Expand and codify Executive Order 26 to include additional languages to account for linguistic diversity across the state, including but not limited to, guaranteed interpretation services for the Board of Elections.
Ensure inclusion of all New Yorkers, regardless of immigration status, in expansions to healthcare coverage on the local and state levels, including the New York Health Act.
Increase access to education for immigrant New Yorkers by increasing funding for prekindergarten through college education and funding for adult education, English for Speakers of Other Languages (ESOL), High School Equivalency (HSE), prep, and English Language Learners (ELL) and Multilingual Learners (MLL) programs.
Building True Sanctuary
Extend and expand sanctuary protections across New York State to end cooperation between state and local law enforcement with ICE; prevent local state agencies from collecting or sharing an individual’s immigration information with federal agencies; ban state and local resources from being used to aid federal immigration enforcement; and guarantee access and provision of legal counsel to undocumented immigrants facing deportation.
End the carveouts to detainer request limits and immigration legal counsel by guaranteeing sanctuary protections regardless of criminal charges.
Increase funding for—and guarantee permanent funding for—immigration legal counsel by amending the Department of State’s mission to ensure renewed funding.
Discontinue the use of gang databases.
End racial and religious profiling of South Asian, Arab, and Muslim people by NYPD, including the coordination between NYPD and the FBI and DHS.
Restrict ICE access inside and outside New York State court houses for the purpose of detaining immigrants, and end court officer cooperation with ICE.
Prevent state and local law enforcement agencies from stopping, investigating, or arresting a person based on perceived immigration status or suspected violation of federal immigration law.
Require state and local agencies and their employees to maintain the confidentiality of immigration status information unless the individual has given consent or unless required by federal law.
Decertify banks that contract with, or fund, ICE.
End state and local contracts with companies that contract with DHS and ICE and share data with ICE.