We Are Calling On The White House

We Are Calling On The White House

President Biden, it is time to give a work permit with temporary status to the undocumented!

Originally Published in Spanish in El Vocero Hispano on
April 26, 2024

We must demand that the White House, if they want to win the election in November, take a more pro-immigrant stance especially with undocumented immigrants from the groups most connected to the U.S. and most popular with the public.

They should not allow the Republicans to continue attacking the border issue and the supposed “invasion”. They could change the discussion and motivate Latinos and other pro-immigrant and pro-justice people through a program that would provide temporary legal status especially for people who have been living in the United States for many years. 

It is also not fair that only new arrivals seeking asylum or TPS, limited to a few countries like Venezuela, Nicaragua or Cuba, have the opportunity to receive work permits while millions of people who have decades or more living in the U.S., married to U.S. citizens or college graduates do not have the same opportunity. We do not want to take away the opportunity for asylum seekers to receive work permits more quickly, as I mentioned in a recent article, but they should extend this opportunity to more immigrants so that they can work legally, help increase tax revenue and also prevent some bad employers from exploiting immigrants by paying wages in violation of the law or in dangerous conditions. 


There are rumors that right now in the White House some of Biden's advisors are talking about a program to grant a kind of executive action with a work permit and the possibility to stay in the country temporarily to people such as: spouses of U.S. citizens, Dreamers who because of their age do not qualify for the current DACA program, essential workers (farm workers) or those who have many years living in the United States. The idea has gained popularity in various sectors of the Democratic Party and among Latino leaders.

This Wednesday, the group of congressmen called “Los Tres Amigos” (The Three Amigos) made up of three Latino congressmen: Chuy Garcia of Chicago, Lou Correa of California and Adriano Espaillat of New york, delivered a letter also signed by many organizations demanding President Biden to give a type of work permit to these people, approximately there are more than a million immigrants without documents married to U.S. citizens but because the waiver program has a large backlog they must wait an average of 3 or more years to receive the appointment at the Consulate of their country to obtain residency and while they do not qualify for any type of relief or work permit.

There are also hundreds of thousands of young people who arrived after the time allowed to qualify for the current DACA program even though they are in high school or college or have already graduated, this is another group with which the public is very sympathetic.


What the president can do is through executive action create a program similar to the one called “parole in place” that is already being used for undocumented immediate family members and spouses of veterans or active members of the military and has been very popular.

Under this program people who qualify, for example are married to U.S. citizens, perhaps for a period of time of 3 or 5 years, or who are in high school or college or have graduated and have no or very few non-serious criminal records, with parole in place can apply for a work permit and if they qualify by marriage apply for permanent residency without having to leave the U.S. or wait for many years.

If the current administration wants us to support them in the November elections, they must show us that the White House is doing something for immigrants.

When President Obama passed DACA more than 10 years ago it had a very positive impact among the Latino, Asian, educators and other pro-immigrant communities and it can happen the same this time, they should not allow the immigration issue to be seen only in a negative way wanting to show that they can control immigrants instead of working on creating a way to address the issue while Congress works on passing a permanent law, which we know is impossible now.

Listen Biden, now is the time!