August 28, 2007

CONLAMIC President to Face Oklahoma House Rep. Randy Terrill on Lou Dobbs Show

Debate Heats up over Terrill’s Anti-immigrant Legislation

New York, NY- Wednesday, August 29, 2007, at 6pm EST, CNN’s Lou Dobbs television show will feature what promises to be an interesting if not heated debate between Rep. Randy Terrill (R-OK) sponsor of the Taxpayer and Citizen Protection Act of 2007 and the Reverend Miguel Rivera, President of the National Coalition of Latino Clergy & Christian Leaders (CONLAMIC) who have lead efforts to fight this anti-immigrant policy in the state of Oklahoma and other similar policies around the nation.

The Washington based CONLAMIC; the largest Latino Christian Advocacy in the United States teamed up with the Oklahoma based American Dream Coalition to address reports of racial profiling and other instances of discrimination by local law enforcement as a result of Rep. Terrill’s Taxpayer and Citizen Protection Act of 2007.

Hispanic ministers from throughout the state of Oklahoma have come together to address a growing fear from not only their undocumented congregants but also from a growing number of American born Hispanics who feel their being targeted as a result of the color of their skin by a law enacted by their own state policymakers.

“CONLAMIC has battled anti-immigrant ordinances in Riverside, New Jersey and other cities that divide communities, cause chaos and fear, and result in injustice and violations of civil rights. Oklahoma’s case is clearly one in which a policymaker was careless to develop a policy that provides local officials with a free pass to practice racial profiling of citizens based on the color of their skin,” said Rev. Rivera.

“We believe it’s time to give a voice to the voiceless and to stand up and fight for our people. We are working with the U.S. Department of Justice at the federal level, through the local courts system, and at the grassroots level with Church and community leaders in a united voice against injustice. We are at a time where our nation should not tolerate racial discrimination, yet in states such as Oklahoma and Georgia, this is an everyday occurrence,” said Rev. Rivera.

Since this policy was enacted earlier this year by Terrill and policymakers in Oklahoma, the states minority communities have erupted in anger about the injustices that have resulted by this careless policy that has failed to protect all citizens in the state. Rev. Victor Orta, President of the American Dream Coalition joined forces with CONLAMIC to mobilize grassroots Latino voters in prayer vigils in Tulsa, rallies and press conferences against the injustices caused by these sloppy policies,” said Rev. Rivera.

“CONLAMIC has a strong grassroots network that advocates for the civil rights of its Christian members but we also fight through the court system to combat the unconstitutionality of these local and state policies,” said William Sanchez, Attorney and President of the CONLAMIC Legal Defense Fund.

CNN’s Lou Dobbs program has helped create an anti-comprehensive opinion about immigration reform among its audience nationwide that earlier this year created an outcry from many vocal Americans who felt that Congress should not create a solution to fix the broken immigration system and to help an estimated 12 million undocumented access a path to residency that would allow them to be law abiding taxpaying citizens. As a result, America is where it started with no hopeful solutions to the problem and only an increased sense of fear, anger, hostility, and division amongst ethnic communities that has toppled us back to the days of the American Civil Rights Movement.

Rev. Rivera looks forward to addressing Mr. Dobbs and Rep. Terrill. Tune in at 6pm eastern standard time.

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