For Immediate Release
January 29, 2013
Morna Ha, NAKASEC, 202-299-9540
Dae Joong Yoon, KRC, 323-937-3718
Sik Son, KRCC, 773-588-9158
(KRC Staff representing NAKASEC, KRCC, and KRC at the President’s Speech January 2013)
NAKASEC, KRC & KRCC join community members and civil rights leaders in Las Vegas to watch Obama unveil principles on immigration reform
Las Vegas, Nevada – This morning, President Barack Obama delivered a speech unveiling his principles around immigration reform to a crowd of thousands gathered in the gymnasium of Del Sol High School. In his comments today, the President laid out several principles on his immigration reform plan and the need to act. The President’s announcement came on the heels of the release of the Senate leadership’s own bi-partisan plan yesterday.
The National Korean American Service & Education Consortium (NAKASEC) and its affiliates the Korean Resource Center in L.A. and the Korean American Resource & Cultural Center (KRCC) in Chicago, IL joined with national leaders and community members at the historic event.
“We applaud President Obama for stepping up to show leadership on immigration and for taking such a strong stance for the rights of all immigrants and future of our country” Morna Ha, executive director of NAKASEC said. “We have been fighting to ensure that families do not have to live in fear of constant separation for close to a decade and that families have a way to reunite with loved ones. We know that there is much to do and many details to sort through and we are hopeful with the comments made by the President on the path to legalization and family backlogs. 2013 is the year to pass immigration reform legislation.”
Among the delegation in Las Vegas was Kevin Lee, an undocumented youth who recently received Deferred Action and his working permit. “I have received DACA, but my parents continue to live in fear of being deported. They have struggled all their lives to provide for me and to contribute to our community. We need immigration reform that will allow both me and my parents to stay together as a family,” said Kevin.
(Site of the President’s speech, Las Vegas, NV January 29 2013)
NAKASEC and affiliates are determined to ensure that any immigration reform bill will have a simple broad path to citizenship for the 11 million undocumented immigrants currently living in the United States, reduction of family backlogs, and a way for all current and future immigrants to work, contribute, and integrate into this country. 1 out of 7 Korean Americans are undocumented and family visa is still a primary way for immigrants to enter into this country.
“Our community is ready to stand up for families like Kevin’s,” said Dae Joong Yoon, executive director of KRC and also attended the event. “We came out last November to ensure that our elected leaders will do the right thing for immigrant communities and we will continue to hold them accountable.”
During the November 2012 elections, NAKASEC, KRC, and KRCC undertook unprecedented efforts to mobilize Korean American voters to the polls in CA, IL, VA and eight other states through our “Together We Vote Campaign.” Close to 95,000 voters were registered and educated on a platform that kept immigration reform issues front and center.
(Our intern Doo Yong empowering a voter July 2012)
“In the coming months we will work to bring together Korean American & Asian American communities and families that are impacted by the failed and inhumane immigration policies and ensure that our voices are heard. We are proud to be taking part in a series of actions and activities that will move our community and get members of Congress acting on immigration reform, escalating into a national mobilization in Washington, DC on April 10” said Son Sik, executive director of KRCC. The event is being locally organized by CASA de Maryland and the Service Employees International Union (SEIU).
(May Day Rally 2010)
NAKASEC, KRC and KRCC attended this event also as part of the Fair Immigration Reform Movement, a national coalition of grassroots organizations fighting for immigrant rights at the local, state and federal level and part of its Keeping Families Together Campaign.