(WASHINGTON, D.C., 5/22/13) -- CAIR is urging voters to contact their members of Congress to request that they include anti-profiling protections in the immigration reform bill, which was approved on Tuesday by the Senate Judiciary Committee.
The bill, which will most likely be debated on the Senate floor in early June, provides a pathway to citizenship for the nation's 11 million undocumented immigrants. The House of Representatives is also expected to release its own version of the immigration bill in the coming weeks.
As reported in CAIR's recent assessment of the Senate immigration bill, Section 3305 of the bill prohibits the blanket use of race and ethnicity by federal law enforcement, but fails to prohibit profiling based on religion or national origin and includes troubling exemptions in cases of national security and border protection.
CAIR has provided a "click and send" letter addressed to members of Congress for voters who want to demand an end to racial and religious profiling by law enforcement. CAIR's sign-on letter supports favorable amendments to the immigration bill that seek to ban law enforcement profiling.
The letter also requests clear guidelines for administrative and judicial review for those appealing their immigration status; prioritize family unity and not weaken or eliminate current family immigrant categories; offer solutions to ongoing cases of processing delays for thousands of immigrants; and, streamline the process for immigrants applying for asylum from conflict zones like Syria.
Recap: Senate Judiciary Committee Debate on Immigration Bill Profiling Measures
Before approving the bill, the Senate Judiciary Committee considered hundreds of amendments but failed to comprehensively address the issue of racial and religious profiling.
However, a few positive amendments were adopted, like Senator Richard Blumenthal's (D-CT) amendment 10. This amendment prohibits the federal government from reimbursing state and local law enforcement agencies that engage in racial profiling and unlawful conduct, a number of conflicting racial and religious profiling amendments will be voted on in the next two weeks.
The committee also adopted Senator Blumenthal's amendments 8, supported by CAIR, which restricts Customs and Border Protection (CBP) from conducting enforcement at places of worship, schools, and other sensitive community locations.
The committee did not consider Senator Mazie Hirono's (D-HI) amendment 19, which would have prohibited federal officers from using religion or national origin in making law enforcement decisions. The amendment also banned open-ended loopholes that permit profiling at the border and for reasons of national security.
Appreciatively, the committee failed to consider Senator Jeff Sessions' (R-AL) amendment 39, which would allow federal law enforcement to engage in racial and ethnic profiling, and voted down Senator Grassley's (R-IA) amendment 49, which would permit federal agents to profile on the basis of nation origin. Both amendments were openly opposed by CAIR.