Immigrant Voices Platform

The Mobilize the Immigrant Vote (MIV) California Alliance, which includes the Korean Resource Center, developed this platform in 2008 to identify the issues important to low-income immigrant communities. We want to provide a tool for individuals to use when deciding how to vote on ballot measures. We created this document with input from community members, partner organizations, and allies throughout the state. Low-income immigrants and people of color can use their vote to create positive change in California on issues that matter to them. Our votes on ballot measures reflect our priorities and values. All people, regardless of immigration status, have a right to quality education, good jobs, health care, public benefits, affordable housing, healthy environments, and human dignity. Our shared values are community, family, health, justice, equality, self-determination and democracy.

Quality and Affordable Education

Youth deserve an education that honors their communities’ histories, teaches critical thinking, and supports teachers with a living wage. Parents and students should be able to participate actively in and inform their children’s and their own education.

  • Provide culturally relevant curriculum, including bilingual education.
  • Make education affordable for young and older adults. Support working parents with quality and affordable child care and after-school programs.
  • End policing in schools.
  • Increase opportunities for youth to attend college, including a rigorous and relevant curriculum and greater access to financial aid.

Quality Jobs for California Workers

Every job is dignified and should be respected. All Californians should be able to provide the basics for themselves and their families and to save for a secure future.
Create jobs and training programs for immigrants and people of color, including ESL classes that help immigrants prepare for the workforce.

  • Fully enforce workers’ rights under the law.
  • Streamline the process for immigrants to continue their careers in the U.S.
  • Support day labor centers and the expansion of workplace rights for domestic workers.

Health Care and Public Benefits

Health care is a human right. Everyone should have access to quality health care and public benefits.

  • Ensure access to low-cost or free health care and coverage, with information in patients’ primary languages
  • Preserve and fully fund the social service “safety net” for everyone.
  • Provide low-income immigrant women and girls with access to culturally-appropriate information necessary to make informed decisions about their reproductive health and rights. Reproductive health needs to be an integral part of our state’s safety net.

Healthy, Habitable, and Affordable Housing

All communities, regardless of immigration status, deserve to live in housing that is safe, affordable for low-income families, and close to where they work.

  • Increase government funding to preserve, maintain, and build affordable and safe housing.
  • Expand, protect, and enforce the rights of renters.
  • Resource alternative models of housing for low-income immigrants and people of color including land ownership, collective ownership, housing co-ops, and community land trusts.
  • Promote responsible development that creates good jobs, housing, and transportation for low-income communities

Healthy Environments

Immigrants and people of color are disproportionately impacted by environmental hazards and pollution. All people have a right to healthy environments where we live, work, play, pray and go to school.

  • End the production and dumping of toxins, hazardous wastes, nuclear materials, and pollution.
  • Respect sacred sites and the self-determination of indigenous and all peoples.
  • End the exploitation of our natural resources, wars, and other unjust policies that are the root causes of our ecological crisis, locally and globally.
  • Invest in sustainable planning and development that reduces the use of our natural resources and creates quality jobs in the “green industry.”

Protecting and Expanding Human and Civil Rights

All communities should be treated with respect and dignity regardless of race, religion, immigration status, gender, sexual orientation, national origin, age, or disabilities.
Promote affirmative action policies, which provide opportunities to marginalized communities.

  • End the selective enforcement of laws.
  • Guarantee due process and the right to a fair trial for all people, including the right to appeal and an immediate stop to indefinite detentions and unfair deportations.
  • Ensure that government authorities do not subject anyone to cruel or abusive treatment or torture.

Immigration Policies that Treat Immigrants with Dignity

  • Immigrants fully participate in our society and contribute to our economic health. The U.S. should be a safe haven from persecution. We all lose out when immigrants, refugees and asylees are denied full citizenship.
  • Offer a fair path to citizenship without costly fees and fines, with special emphasis on reuniting families as simply and quickly as possible.
  • Increase civic participation through the expansion of naturalization services, ESL classes, and language-accessible materials and services.
  • Bring an immediate end to violence against immigrants and surrounding communities which includes stopping the raids and an end to the militarization of our communities at the border and in urban and rural areas.

When preparing to vote, ask yourself the following questions:

  • Will this measure support or hurt vulnerable communities? What will be the long-term impact?
  • Who are the supporters? Who are the opponents? What do you know about these groups?
  • How will our government protect, respect and fulfill human rights through this measure? Will resources be taken away from important social programs?
  • Will this measure unite immigrants and U.S.-born communities?