Thank you for the Jan. 11 editorial regarding the need to reform our "outdated and punitive immigration system."
At present, many children born in America are being separated from their parents and put into foster care because their parents are being deported under the Secure Communities program. This federal program gives authority to local law enforcement to send fingerprints of individuals arrested for minor offenses to the Immigration and Customs Enforcement Agency to check on their immigration status. An undocumented person can be sent to a detention camp until the courts decide if the person should be deported. This program is costly, leads to racial profiling and civil rights violations. It is happening here in Merced County.
A comprehensive federal immigration law is urgently needed. I suggest this reformed immigration law provide: a means for children brought to this country by undocumented parents to become legal residents, a visa based on realistic quotas for immigrants who want to do the manual work that employees need, and a reasonable and affordable process for existing undocumented immigrants to become legal residents.