What a blessing it is to have a Representative like Judy Chu! She has stood up for the workers at Walmart, she has spoken out on behalf of refugee children and families crossing our borders, and she has issued a statement calling for a diplomatic solution to resolve our dispute with Iran over its alleged nuclear weapons program. She also spoke up about restoring the Voting RIghts Act when she was invited to speak (along with my wife Jill) at the Martin Luther King event sponsored by the Interdenominational Ministerial Alliance here in Pasadena. She is a woman after my own heart!
At a time when Congress refuses to show either compassion or common sense when it comes to immigration (or virtually any other issue), Judy introduced a bill calling for "government-appointed counsel in immigration proceedings for unaccompanied children and individuals with mental disabilities." She has shown genuine interest and concern for immigrants by visiting the Adelanto Detention Center, where hundreds of undocumented people are being warehoused and threatened with deportation.
Secondly, she opposed war in Iraq and Afghanistan, and is calling for a diplomatic solution to resolve our dispute with Iran over its alleged nuclear weapons program. (See her letter below).
Given the insanity of the Republican Congress, it is refreshing to have a Representative who has compassion for immigrants, concern for workers, and good sense when it comes to resolving conflicts in the Middle East. She deserves our thanks and praise!
Washington, D.C. – Today, Reps. Judy Chu (D-CA), Hakeem Jeffries (D-NY), Karen Bass (D-CA), Lucille Roybal-Allard (D-CA), Luis Gutierrez (D-IL), and Suzan DelBene (D-WA) announced the introduction of the Vulnerable Immigrant Voice Act of 2014 (VIVA). This legislation would mandate government-appointed counsel in immigration proceedings for unaccompanied children and individuals with mental disabilities. Currently, these individuals have no right to government-appointed counsel in such proceedings.
Without legal representation, children must present a legal defense on their own to prevent their removal from the United States. The bill would allow vulnerable immigrants to have a fair opportunity to seek protections for which they may qualify.
“Our current immigration removal system fails to live up to American values. Each year, thousands of children face removal proceedings alone,” said Rep. Chu. “A child should not have to face such proceedings -- that determines whether they can stay or must go -- without legal counsel. This bill is a critical step forward in ensuring due process and that the most vulnerable immigrants have a meaningful opportunity to seek the protections for which they qualify.”
Dear Dr. Manousos,
Thank you for contacting me to express support for a diplomatic approach with Iran. I share your strong commitment to using peaceful means to pressure Iran to abandon its nuclear program.
Although the United States and the international community cannot tolerate an Iranian government that does not act in good faith or abide by international agreements, I fully agree that we must do all that we can to resolve our dispute with Iran diplomatically. I opposed the war in Iraq and the war in Afghanistan, and I believe we must be very careful and deliberate whenever we decide to send our brave troops into harm's way.
While the negotiations are ongoing, I believe we must continue to rely on the existing sanctions and diplomatic efforts to resolve this very troubling situation. As this critical matter receives further consideration in Congress, please rest assured that I will keep your views in mind.
Again, thank you for contacting me on this important issue. Democracy works best when we stay in touch, so I invite you to visit chu.house.gov and sign-up for e-mail updates at chu.house.gov/signup. And get late-breaking news at facebook.com/repjudychu and twitter.com/repjudychu.
Judy Chu, PhD
Member of Congress