HOUSTON, TX – Yesterday, FWD.us joined the American Business Immigration Coalition, Texans for Economic Growth powered by New American Economy, and the National Immigration Forum to host the 2019 Texas Summit on Immigration in downtown Houston. Business leaders, civic leaders and elected officials participated in the all-day Summit, which featured solutions-focused discussions on the need to advance immigration reform in Texas and nationally.
During the event, participants heard from a wide range of voices on immigration matters impacting Texas. Programming included panel discussions on the importance of immigration reform to our economy to industries statewide, remarks from business leaders and elected officials on the urgent need to protect Dreamers and Temporary Protected Status (TPS) holders from deportation, and polling and video presentations.
Speakers included U.S. Representatives Will Hurd and Lizzie Fletcher; Jeff Moseley, President and CEO of the Texas Association of Business; and industry leaders from the Greater Houston Partnership and the Center for Houston’s Future, among others. Several speakers directly impacted by the broken immigration system also shared how, for decades, they have contributed to Texas’ economy and communities without the ability to secure permanent protection from deportation.
Key topics of conversation during the Summit included the need for Congress to provide a long-term legislative solution for Dreamers and TPS holders, particularly as the Supreme Court is set to take up the DACA program — and the futures of roughly 700,000 DACA recipients this coming November. Oral arguments in the case begin November 12, and a ruling could come down as soon as January 2020.Participants also discussed the need to reform our nation’s high-skilled immigration system and to seek common sense reform.
The Summit showcased the business community’s desire for immigration reform at the state and federal levels, and Texas businesses and elected officials’ commitment to working together in a bipartisan manner for the benefit of all Texans. Quotes from the 2019 Texas Summit on Immigration include:
“It’s great to see such a diverse group of state elected officials and business and civic leaders come together to discuss comprehensive immigration reform in a pragmatic and respectful manner. Conversations such as this give me hope that change, including a long-term legislative solution for Dreamers, visa reform, and the end of family separation policies, among other priorities, is something we can accomplish by working together. I look forward to continued engagement, debate, and action on the issue.” – U.S. Representative Lizzie Fletcher
“A smart business invests in its workforce. It’s a fact that immigrants are an invaluable part of the Texas economy. We need policies that encourage investment in our workforce rather than deter it. The future of Texas businesses depend on it.” – Jeff Moseley, President and CEO, Texas Association of Business
“It’s no secret that our current immigration system is badly broken, hindering our competitiveness in a global economy and hurting millions of American families, including families right here in Texas. But, despite the many issues we face, I’m encouraged by the optimism of our speakers and panelists today, and I’m encouraged by the dedication of all of those here working toward comprehensive immigration reform.” – FWD.us Texas State Director Zaira Garcia