For immediate release
April 17, 2015
Actions by UNITE HERE in Los Angeles Echo Calls by Protestors and White House to Allow DAPA and DACA to Proceed
[New Orleans, LA] Today, members of UNITE HERE join hundreds of immigration advocates converging in New Orleans for actions at the Fifth Circuit Court of Appeals, where judges will weigh whether to grant a request for an emergency stay that would allow the President’s new DAPA and DACA program expansion to proceed.
“I work hard cleaning rooms to support my family,” says Maria Del Monte, a housekeeper from the Dominican Republic with 5 years of service at the Loews Hotel in New Orleans, who is participating in this week’s actions and is member of UNITE HERE Local 2262. “I’m here today because we’ve seen what happens to immigrants without protections—children get separated from parents and companies take advantage of workers living in fear. It’s time for a change.”
In New Orleans, UNITE HERE Local 2262, which represents thousands of hospitality workers citywide, joins allied community organizations this week in protests, including the New Orleans Workers’ Center for Racial Justice and the Congress of Day Laborers, the Southern Poverty Law Center, and others. In solidarity with New Orleans protestors, UNITE HERE is also holding a press conference in Los Angeles with workers and immigration leaders, calling on the courts to allow DAPA and DACA to move forward.
“Anti-immigrant politicians are using every delay tactic to stop the implementation of DACA and DAPA, but the law is on our side,” says Maria Elena Durazo, the General Vice President of Immigration, Civil Rights and Diversity with UNITE HERE, speaking at the UNITE HERE press conference in Los Angeles. “At stake in this lawsuit are the lives of millions of hardworking immigrants who should not have to work or live in fear.”
Nationwide, UNITE HERE represents thousands of people working in hotels, casinos and food service industries who may be impacted by the expansion of DACA and DAPA. Despite delays on the deferred action programs, the Union is pressing forward with efforts to assist immigrant workers and their families. In the coming months, UNITE HERE will be rolling out a plan to help women and men apply for legal status and work permits.
UNITE HERE represents 270,000 women and men across North America who work in the hotel, gaming, food service, manufacturing, textile, distribution, laundry, transportation, and airport industries. Together, we are building a movement to empower immigrants and all workers across North America to achieve greater equality and opportunity.