Joint Statement: SAVE Act Won’t Save Anyone

For immediate release
March 24, 2008

Contact:
Becky Belcore, KRCC, 773-506-9158
EunSook Lee, NAKASEC, 323-937-3703, ext. 205
YuSoung Mun, YKASEC, 718-460-5600
Dae Joong Yoon, KRC, 323-937-3718

“SAVE Act Won’t Save Anyone”
Korean Americans Demand a Stop to Congressional Efforts to Pass Anti-Immigrant Legislation

Joint Statement by:
National Korean American Service & Education Consortium (NAKASEC)
Korean American Resource & Cultural Center, Chicago
Korean Resource Center, Los Angeles
YKASEC – Empowering the Korean American Community, Flushing

(Los Angeles, CA) NAKASEC and affiliates are deeply concerned by the recent momentum the SAVE Act, which was authored by Rep. Heath Shuler (D-NC), has gained in Congress. The recent SAVE Act (Secure America Through Verification and Enforcement Act, H.R. 4088) discharge petition filed by Republican leadership is an example of short-sighted politics blinding both sides of the aisle to the reality that the majority of America demands fair immigration reform. The movement of the SAVE Act has dangerous repercussions in accelerating the movement of other anti-immigrant legislation.

Some of the extreme provisions of the SAVE Act would result in:
• Requiring over 7 million employers to verify the work status of more than 160 million workers within four years using a federal database that is known to have a high error rate. More than 1.1 million small businesses are owned by Asian Americans and Pacific Islanders (AA & PI) and AA & PI workers are vulnerable targets for increased racial profiling, discrimination, and unjust termination against our communities.
• Driving undocumented workers even further underground and promoting an unregulated cash economy. AA and PIs comprise 10% of the undocumented population and are the fastest growing subgroup.
• Tearing families apart by spending more money into detention and deportation programs.

“The unrelenting anti-immigrant legislative attack led by a handful of House and Senate members in both parties offers sound bites, not solutions. We know that they are organizing anti-immigrant caucuses and that is a troubling signal of the continuing trend to scapegoat immigrants rather than addressing the challenges that America is facing,” stated EunSook Lee, Executive Director, NAKASEC.

“The SAVE Act has opened the door for a pack of anti-immigrant Congressional measures in the House and the Senate. These mean-spirited measures disregard the contributions and humanity of immigrant communities and is a stain to our shared American traditions of fairness and justice, ” stated Yu Soung Mun, Executive Director, YKASEC.

“Despite the overwhelming evidence of public opinion data and election results that show using immigration as a wedge issue does not win voters or races, elected officials and candidates continue to seek public support by using anti-immigrant rhetoric,” stated Becky Belcore, Executive Director, KRCC.

“The Korean American community and our allies are closely following the races this year and participating in record numbers and we intend to hold our elected officials accountable. We will not stand for this political pandering that manipulates people’s real concerns about their futures by reinforcing complete falsehoods about us and other immigrant communities,” stated Dae Joong Yoon, Executive Director, KRC.