Communist Party, USA: Resolution on Immigrant Rights

BY: 28th National Convention| July 20, 2005

Whereas, human migration has under conditions of advanced capitalism, imperialism and corporate-driven globalization, reached an unprecedented scale in our time. Capitalism, in its constant search for greater profits across the globe, continually changes peoples ways of earning a living, causing many to seek different work in different locations: from country to town to city, peasant to worker, small business to service worker, unionized to unorganized, impoverishment is the main trend. Upward mobility is the exception for the people, and greater corporate profit is the rule; and,

Whereas, neo-liberal policies of free trade, privatization, austerity, and repression of democratic movements have increased massive economically motivated migration within countries and from the poorer countries to the wealthier. It increases the differences in wealth both between countries and within both rich and poor countries. The people of third world and former socialist states are affected disproportionately by this dynamic; and,

Whereas, U.S.-based corporations and the U.S. government have been the foremost promoters of policies that have created the increase in labor migration. While they assert the right of capital to move across borders in search of profits, they act to place the movement of labor under harsh restrictions at home and abroad. Workers who leave their home countries under these pressures are deprived of basic labor and civil rights, and subjected to discrimination, harassment and even physical attacks by the governments and worldwide neo-fascist anti-immigrant movements; and,

Whereas, restrictive, discriminatory, and punitive laws and practices are designed to make migrant labor more vulnerable to super exploitative practices, which create greater profits that first and foremost go to giant transnational corporations, particularly those of the U.S. The super exploitation of immigrant labor is used as a wedge to lower the wages, working conditions, living standards and quality of life for the people as a whole, immigrant and native born, again for the benefit primarily of giant corporations. In a parallel fashion the anti-democratic measures used to deny immigrants the ability to defend themselves, as individuals and through collective activity, work to undermine democracy for all workers and the general populace; and, Whereas, the working-class, democratic answer to these methods of divide and conquer and super-exploitation is working-class democratic internationalism. We see all workers everywhere, with or without papers as brothers and sisters. We give solidarity to democratic peoples struggles against imperialism and corporate global power. We fight against all forms of exploitation, and against discrimination on the basis of race, nationality, gender, sexual preference, or immigration status. Workers are workers, with or without papers. No human being is illegal. We fight for full legal rights for immigrant workers here today and those who come in the future. To build multiracial unity of workers and people, citizen, documented or undocumented, is the only way to move forward for democracy, economic and social justice, and socialism. Increasingly this involves opposition to the fascist-tinged anti-immigrant movement that is being fostered by the ultra-right in the form of hate speech and vigilantism directed against immigrants, especially those of color; and,

Whereas, over the past several years a mighty mass-based labor-led coalition has been developing which has united Latinos, Asian Americans, African Americans, Caribbean Americans, whites, labor unions, churches, and community and civic groups behind a program of greater rights for immigrant workers. Immigrant workers, documented and undocumented, naturalized and non-citizen are increasingly joining in democratic struggles against rightwing polices. These developments show that the fight for the rights of immigrant workers is winnable through a program of working-class unity and coalition with other democratic forces in active struggle; and,

Whereas, the Bush Administration has sharply escalated invasion, interventionism and neo-liberal policies abroad and restrictive immigration policies at home. Indeed immigration is officially posed as a problem of national security. Immigration functions have been moved from the Department of Justice to the Department of Homeland Security. Policies of second-class temporary labor and repatriation are being pushed. Greater limitations are set for documented and undocumented workers in the workplace and community, and for all services including citizenship. The corporate media has generally supported this direction and popularized rightwing anti-immigrant misinformation, stereotypes, and political personalities and groups;

Therefore be it resolved, that the Communist Party USA calls for:

Solidarity with democratic forces fighting imperialist neoliberal polices in their home countries so that mass migration from poor countries to rich becomes unnecessary.

The rapid legalization, without discrimination or onerous conditions, of all undocumented workers and their relatives living in the United States.

The creation of mechanisms whereby immigrant workers in the future can come to the United States legally and safely with full rights.

The rejection of the Bush administration’s guest worker program; demand that any program of migrant labor (a) accord to migrant workers and their families all labor and other legal rights accorded to U.S.-born workers, (b) not accede to employers the ultimate control over the decision of who can come to the U.S. and who cannot, and under what circumstances workers and their families can stay in the U.S., (c) include the real possibility that the worker and his/her family become, if they so desire, permanent residents and then citizens, and (d) give migrant workers and their families full access to U.S. courts for the enforcement of their rights.

The repeal of the Anti-Terrorism and Effective Death Penalty Act, the Illegal Immigration Reform and Immigrant Responsibility Act, the USA PATRIOT Act, the employer sanctions component of IRCA, and the REAL ID Act, a legislative overturn of the Hoffman Plastic Compounds Decision, and the repeal of all other anti-immigrant federal, state, county and local legislation and executive orders.

The prohibition of state, local and county police from acting as immigration agents.

The U.S./Mexico border to be demilitarized and humanized.

An end to discrimination against immigrants with or without papers in the issuance of drivers licenses, and no restriction on the right of immigrants to use consular ID cards or other country-of-origin IDs to open bank and credit accounts or to deal with government agencies.

All workers and their family members, with or without documents, to have full access to all public services paid for by their taxes and labor, including Social Security and Medicare and affordable higher education.

The prosecution of organizations, individuals and media outlets that foment hatred and violence toward the foreign-born, or toward specific racial and ethnic groups.

Support and development of greater anti-defamation and anti-repression efforts defending immigrants and their communities.

Stop government harassment of Native American communities in our border areas, and respect their rights to pass back and forth freely as guaranteed by treaty.

The defeat of the anti-immigrant, ultra right forces in the elections of 2005, 2006, 2007 and 2008 on federal, state and local levels.

An end to the appointment of repressive, anti-immigrant judges.

Labor and community forces to help to strengthen the coalition of forces united by the labor-led Immigrant Workers Freedom and work within it to advance legislation and other activities that will achieve freedom and justice for immigrant workers. In the context of this coalition, we support the positive provisions of Kennedy-McCain bill, while working to strengthen its protections of immigrant workers rights and opposing restrictive measures; and,

Be it further resolved, that we call on Communist Party bodies and activists to increase and improve outreach to and support of immigrant communities and labor and civic organizations, including the building of our Party and press among these communities. Increased and more rapid publication of materials in Spanish and other languages are needed. More meetings, forums, rallies, seminars, studies, and assignments of responsibility are needed on the question; and,

Be it further resolved, that the incoming National Committee should establish ongoing collective effort to help coordinate greater concentration on the question including the development of an Immigrant Workers Bill of Rights taking into account previous such documents and progressive international standards such as those set out in the Declaration on the Rights of Migrants, Refugees, Displaced Peoples and their Families, adopted at the 5th World Social Forum, Porto Allegre, Brazil in 2005.

Adopted by the 28th National Convention of the Communist Party, USA, Chicago, IL; July 1-3, 2005.


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