By: Prasanna Vengadam
It’s time we changed the immigration process. Asian Pacific Americans have consistently experienced exclusion and unjust immigration laws since the 1800’s. These laws do not provide APA’s equal access to pursue the American dream. Right now, it’s a long, expensive, and unfair process. Depending on the visa, it takes anywhere from 5-10 years to become a green card holder, and another 5 years to become a citizen. It also costs about $5,000 – 10,000 for a family of two or three members.
It’s a shame that while most APA’s are skilled professionals who contribute to America’s economy, they are not able to enjoy the same quality of life. Skilled APA’s are separated from their families for unacceptable length of time. My friend, a naturalized U.S. citizen, got married to his fiancée in India in June of 2007. She had to wait 22 months to join her husband. These skilled professionals are contributing to the economy, but the path to their citizenship doesn’t seem to have an end.
Note: Asian & Pacific Islander American Vote - Michigan is a member of the Reform Immigration For America coalition.
"The necessary components of reform include: (1) improving the economic situation of all workers in the United States; (2) legalizing the status of undocumented immigrants working and living in the United States; (3) reforming visa programs to keep families together, protecting workers’ rights, and ensuring that future immigration is regulated and controlled rather than illegal and chaotic; (4) implementing smart, effective enforcement measures targeted at the worst violators of immigration and labor laws; (5) prioritizing immigrant integration into our communities and country; and (6) respecting the due process rights of all in the United States."
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