Latinos in Connecticut are pushing for changes to immigration law on the state and federal levels.
The state Latino and Puerto Rican Affairs Commission presented a letter to U.S. Sen. Richard Blumenthal Monday morning during a brief press conference at the Capitol urging for Congress to pass a comprehensive immigration bill.
It’s an effort that Blumenthal enthusiastically supports. Changing the nation’s immigration policy is “one of the reasons that I sought to serve in the United States Senate,” Blumenthal told members of the commisison. “We have to enable…the 11 million people who are here in the shadows to have a path to citizenship, earned citizenship, as well as to crack down on employers that exploit and hire undocumented workers, strengthen our border security and streamline the…legal immigration process.”
Activists are also pressing for change in the state legislature this session. They are backing a bill that would permit undocumented immigrants to obtain a state-issued drivers license. Supporters of the measure, including state Rep. Juan Candeleria, a New Haven Democrat, said it’s a matter of public safety.
“This bill will ensure that everyone that drives in the state of Connecticut will be able to acquire a driver’s license [and] will be able to…register their vehicle,” Candelaria said.
More than 2,000 people turned out for a public hearing in New Haven earlier this month in support of the proposal. The legislature’s transportation committee is expected to take it up soon.