There are an estimated 12 million undocumented immigrants in the United States. Most live on the margins of our society in or near the poverty level even though they work in difficult and vital jobs that help sustain and grow the U.S.’ economy. Due to lack of status and accompanying poverty, they lack access to better employment, higher education, family reunification, unhindered travel abroad to visit family and many forms of poverty-reducing social services.
In a landmark pastoral letter Strangers No Longer: Together on the Journey of Hope the Catholic bishops of Mexico and the United States, acknowledge that the current immigration system is badly in need of reform and that a comprehensive approach to fixing it is required. The bishops offer a comprehensive set of recommendations for changing U.S. laws and policies to reflect the principles contained in Scripture and Catholic Social Teaching and to bring about a more humane and just immigration system in the United States.
Catholic principles for legislation to address the needs of undocumented immigrants are fundamental to ensuring that our immigration laws meet the economic, security, and social needs of the country and are fair and expedient for immigrants seeking to reunify with family members and build better lives in the United States.
The Justice for Immigrants Campaign builds on Catholic principles on migration and is a practical way for people to be engaged in advocating for comprehensive immigration reform.