Model Talking Points and Fact Sheet

 Talking Points  |  Fact Sheet

 

Talking Points

All Texans will suffer if the state enforces immigration laws.

  1. Texas relies on immigrant workers to help our economy flourish; without them, our economic future is at risk.
  2. Public safety for all Texans is jeopardized when police become immigration agents.
  3. Enforcement of immigration laws goes against Texas values of family and community.
  4. U.S. Citizens often bear the burden of state efforts to crack down on immigrants.

Texas relies on immigrant workers to help our economy flourish; without them, our economic future is at risk.

•    States that have passed restrictive immigration laws have suffered economically.  Agriculture and construction industries are impacted immediately, causing agricultural employers and workers to relocate and construction projects to stall.
•    In Texas, unauthorized workers make up nine percent of the workforce.  They are essential workers in the housekeeping, construction, agriculture, and hospitality industries.
•    The immediate negative effect on the United States of eliminating the undocumented workforce would include $1.8 trillion in annual lost spending, $651.5 million in annual lost output, and 8.1 million lost jobs.  Even after the economy adjusted, job losses would still exceed 2.8 million.

Public safety for all Texans is jeopardized when police become immigration agents.

•    Sheriffs of Dallas, El Paso, and Hidalgo Counties, and the Police in San Antonio, El Paso, Fort Worth, Austin, and McAllen, oppose legislation that would require local law enforcement to implement federal civil immigration laws.
•    Police and Sheriffs’ Offices have limited resources and must set priorities to be effective.  They should focus on arresting rapists and murderers and investigating burglaries, not wasting their time looking for federal administrative law violations (akin to a civil violation of the federal tax code), among people who are working and contributing to our community.
•    If local law enforcement targets immigrants, it undermines the public safety of entire cities.  When immigrants do not trust the police, safe havens are created for dangerous criminals who can prey on all of us.  Furthermore, victims and witnesses can be discouraged from reporting crimes if they fear their own or loved ones’ deportation.

Enforcement of immigration laws goes against Texas values of family and community.

•    Texas is proud of its unique and bicultural history.  State and local enforcement of immigration laws harms the very fabric of Texas society.
•    The Christian Life Commission of the Baptist General Convention of Texas, the Texas Catholic Conference of Bishops, Texas Impact, Esperanza por America, and dozens of Evangelical congregations are asking the state not to engage in immigration enforcement because it will destroy church communities, families, and neighborhoods.

U.S. Citizens often bear the burden of state efforts to crack down on immigrants.

•    More than 3,000 U.S. Citizens nationwide have been mistakenly detained as a result of Secure Communities, one of several immigration enforcement tools relying on local law enforcement to operate.
•    A native Texan spent the night in an Arlington jail, missed her children’s first day of school, and feared deportation after authorities mistook her for an illegal immigrant.

 

 Fact Sheet

Immigration Laws: Don’t Mess with ‘Em, Texas

Texas business, faith, law enforcement, and community leaders agree: Leave immigration laws and their enforcement to the feds.

•    The Christian Life Commission of the Baptist General Convention of Texas, the Texas Association of Business, the Greater Houston Partnership (Houston’s Chamber of Commerce), the Texas Catholic Conference of Bishops, the Texas AFL-CIO, Somos Republicans, the Anti-Defamation League – Southwest and North Texas Regions, and many more statewide and local organizations agree: Texas should not play a role in making or enforcing immigration law.
•    Texas law enforcement, including the Sheriffs of Dallas, El Paso, and Hidalgo Counties, as well as the Police in San Antonio, El Paso, Fort Worth, Austin, and McAllen, also oppose legislation that would require local law enforcement to implement federal civil immigration laws.

Immigrant workers are essential to the Texas economy.  Without them, our economic recovery would stall.

•    States that have passed restrictive immigration laws have suffered dramatic economic hardships; in particular, their agriculture and construction industries are harmed immediately, causing agricultural employers and workers to relocate. Scott Beaulier, “Tough on Immigration is Tough on Economic Growth,” The Freeman: Ideas on Liberty, 6:1, January/February 2012.
•    In Texas, unauthorized workers make up nine percent of the workforce.   Julian Aguilar, “Undocumented Population in Texas Increasing,” February 1, 2011, Texas Tribune.  They are concentrated in the housekeeping, construction, agriculture, and hospitality industries. Patrick Jankowski, “Potential Tax Revenues from Unauthorized Workers in Houston’s Economy,” Greater Houston Partnership, January, 2012.
•    The immediate negative effect on the United States of eliminating the undocumented workforce would include $1.8 trillion in annual lost spending, $651.5 million in annual lost output, and 8.1 million lost jobs.  Even after the economy adjusted, job losses would still exceed 2.8 million. The Perryman Group, “An Essential Resource: An Analysis of the Economic Impact of Undocumented Workers on Business Activity in the U.S. with Estimated Effects by State and Industry,” 2008.

Regulating immigration will harm all Texans.

•    State immigration laws lead to expensive and protracted litigation, wasting resources that Texas does not have, particularly during a budget crisis.
•    Immigration enforcement by local police also undermines community policing, leading to a loss of access to crucial information, including crime reporting by victims and witnesses.  Without community trust, law enforcement cannot maintain public safety.
•    As a state with a diverse population and a proud bicultural history, laws that could encourage the targeting of one group based on their ethnic appearance are inconsistent with our principles and are destructive to the community.
•    U.S. Citizens often bear the burden of laws aimed at the undocumented.  For instance, a native Texan spent the night in an Arlington jail, missed her children’s first day of school, and feared deportation after authorities mistook her for an illegal immigrant.  Patrick McGee, “Texan is jailed as illegal immigrant,” Star Telegram, August 30, 2007.