Franciscan Sister of Christian Charity Sister Kathleen Murphy continues to summarize the pleas of the Bishops of the U.S. and Mexico in their document, Strangers No Longer: Together on the Journey of Hope.
Further policy recommendations include:
* In 1996, the U.S. Congress gutted due process rights for migrants with the passage of the Illegal Immigration Reform and Immigrant Responsibility Act (IIRIRA), which authorizes the detention and deportation of migrants for relatively minor offenses, even after they have served their sentences. We urge the U.S. Congress to revisit this law and to make appropriate changes consistent with due process rights. We also urge the Mexican government to honor the right to due process for all those who are in the country, who do not now enjoy due process and who may be removed from the country for arbitrary reasons.
Protection of Asylum Seekers
* We restate our long-held position that asylum seekers and refugees should have access to qualified judges who will objectively consider their pleas. We urge both countries to work with our Central American neighbors to ensure that asylum seekers and refugees throughout our hemisphere have access to appropriate due process protections consistent with international law.
The Bishops make it clear that immigration issues are not just for Americans. Mexico needs to improve in some areas and we also need to be aware of further concerns throughout Central America where justice is often denied to citizens. We have much to pray for!