Organizational Endorsement of the New Way Forward Act
We invite you to join us in supporting the “New Way Forward” Act, which would help restore fundamental principles of due process and compassion to a deeply unjust immigration system.

The legal framework behind today’s mass detention and deportation infrastructure dates primarily to 1996, when a pair of harsh laws dramatically altered U.S. immigration policy. This legislation entangled our civil immigration system with our flawed criminal justice system, linking two systems which both suffer from racial bias and significant obstacles to justice and fairness. In addition, harmful laws enacted in 1929 by white supremacists to criminalize migration has driven a mass expansion in federal private prisons and enabled significant abuses, from “assembly-line” hearings of shackled people to Trump's infamous family separation policy.

These laws put a chokehold on pathways to legalization and naturalization by massively expanding the number of disqualifying criminal grounds for legal permanent residents and other immigrants, removing opportunities for individuals to seek deportation relief before a judge, and subjecting immigrants to up to 20 years in federal prison for seeking to reenter the U.S. to reunite with their families. As with the widely condemned and punitive welfare “reform” and crime bills, these laws relied on racialized stereotypes to create policies and laws that treat people of color as disposable and criminal until proven otherwise. These laws are the blueprint for the sweeping enforcement and deportation machine that we see in full force today.

Sponsored by U.S. Representatives Jesus "Chuy" Garcia (IL), Pramila Jayapal (WA), Karen Bass (CA), and Ayanna Pressley (MA), the New Way Forward Act would begin to undo the harms of these immigrant criminalization laws through a series of robust policy reforms that:

1. End mandatory detention and require probable cause for arrest
2. Implements a five year statute of limitations for removal
3. Limit the criminal-legal-system-to-deportation pipeline
4. Restores judicial discretion and end summary deportations
5. Promote public safety by ending the entanglement of federal immigration law
enforcement and local law enforcement
6. Decriminalizes Migration
7. Creates an Opportunity to Come Home

To endorse the bill, please provide the following:
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