By Amanda Vender

A controversial new immigration bill will go to the Senate for a vote this spring. The bill, HR 4437, would criminalize 12 million undocumented immigrants.*

This means the police could arrest undocumented immigrants, and they would be deported and barred them from returning to the U.S. With this bill, anyone who helps undocumented immigrants would be considered a criminal too. The bill would also put a long fence on the U.S.-Mexico border. Supporters of the bill say that these measures are needed to protect U.S. border security.

Immigrant organizations in Queens held an Immigrant Justice Fair on February 11 with food, music and letter-writing to New York Senator Charles Schumer to urge him to vote against the bill.

“It is almost impossible to get documents to work in the U.S. But we still have to work to be able to send money to our families. There are no jobs in our home countries,” said Linda Abad of DAMAYAN, an association of Filipino nannies and housekeepers.

*Undocumented immigrants: People from other countries who do not have legal documents to be in the U.S.