2007-09-14 / Letters

Keeping Families Together

Dear Editor,

Every day, I am struck by the contrast between the reality of immigration that we live with here in New York City and the negative images of the issue that have shaped the recent legislative debate in Washington, DC. In our great city, our immigrant population has grown steadily, and has helped us to continue to be the most dynamic city in the country, if not the world.

I believe that two key principles must shape future changes in immigration policy. First - a path to citizenship for immigrants. To close the door to millions of hard-working immigrants to becoming citizens is to create a permanent category of second class people.

Second - family unity. We must find a way to keep immigrant families together. A solid family provides a sound foundation for a healthy and prosperous society. Deported parents leave behind fractured families and deprive them of a significant source of income. Breaking families apart is not a path to a better America.

WILLIAM C. THOMPSON, JR. NEW YORK CITY COMPTROLER

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