The Long Island immigration advocacy community gained a key ally today in Suffolk County Executive Steve Bellone. He joined Assemblyman Phil Ramos, Long Island Wins, our allies and members of the community in Brentwood to commemorate the launch of a new ad campaign pushing for comprehensive immigration reform.
“We are together in making sure Suffolk County moves in a direction that is good for our economy,” said County Executive Bellone. “That is a direction that talks about our diversity and inclusiveness. We’re all in this together. When we all work together and we’re all doing well, we are stronger as a community and stronger as a county.”
“Immigrants have been one of the greatest strengths of our country,” added Bellone. It is time for us to pass comprehensive immigration reform. It is good for our county and good for our country. I urge Congress to pass comprehensive immigration reform. The time is now.”
“People need to know the benefits of immigration reform for all citizens,” said Assemblyman Phil Ramos. “The added purchasing power, revenues, stimulation to our economy, we are hurting all citizens of this country by not legalizing the undocumented.”
Assemblyman Ramos brought up our nation’s discriminatory immigration policies in the past, including Operation Wetback and the Asian Exclusion Act, which discriminated against Mexican and Asian immigrants respectively.
The support of comprehensive immigration reform from County Executive Bellone is a huge step in the right direction for all immigrants on Long Island. It shows exactly how much progress has been made over the past few years since the previous administration, in which former County Executive Steve Levy was vehemently outspoken against immigration and regularly spewed racist, anti-immigrant rhetoric.
We are glad to have County Executive Bellone on our side and look forward to working together in making Long Island more welcoming for everyone.