(Norcross, GA) – Yesterday on Fox Business show Varney & Co., Georgia State Representative Mesha Mainor said, “billions are going to support illegal immigrants while nothing is going to the Black community.”
This is a statement from several organizations and individuals in Georgia:
“Georgia has a rich history of collaboration and cooperation between all the racial and ethnic groups that have built this state. Our cultural and racial diversity make this state a great place to live and work. Georgia continues to show its strength in its diversity. Our growing multi-racial and multi-ethnic communities continue to work collaboratively to build power for ourselves. We are doing the work to build bridges and alliances across race and ethnicity to ensure all communities can thrive and be respected together.
We condemn the comments made by Georgia Representative Mesha Mainor and demand an apology for her divisive and false statements that characterize support for immigrants as a loss for the Black community. This stands in direct contrast to the reality on the ground and the work being done to build up all our communities in Georgia.
To begin with, K-12 access to education is guaranteed in this country regardless of a child’s immigration status. Children in the United States continue to have access to education and we have a responsibility to meet the needs of every child in this country. Schools should be fully funded to address the needs of all children.
Secondly, it is disheartening to hear white nationalist rhetoric coming from an elected official who should know better. In a survey the National Immigration Forum and the Bullfinch Group fielded May 12-17, just after the pandemic-era Title 42 health policy ended, more than 80% of respondents agreed with the statement, ‘As the U.S. works to restore order at the border, it is important that Republicans and Democrats work together to pass immigration reforms that address labor shortages and inflation, and protect people already here and contributing.’ Clearly, Georgia Representative Mainor is out of touch with where our nation wants to go with solutions on immigration reform.
Georgians of all racial and ethnic backgrounds are working together to build a better state. There are Black immigrants affected by these divisive statements, Black immigrants from diverse backgrounds that came to our great nation looking for hope and a better life. We know that any victory against racism and white supremacy is a victory for all of us. At a time when white nationalist and extremist groups pose a serious national security threat to our nation, we must make sure not to amplify their rhetoric and work to understand the power of words before we speak. Our struggle is not against other underrepresented groups or against white people. Our struggle is against white supremacy. Our struggle is against unjust systems. Our struggle is for better funded public schools that set all of our students up for success, not a select few. Our struggle is for better jobs, and housing. We can only achieve these victories together. And we will continue to build collaboratively across race, ethnicity, gender, sexual orientation and gender identity for a Georgia that lives up to our collective vision.
We are stronger together and we will continue that work together.”
Asian American Advocacy Fund
Asian Americans Advancing Justice – Atlanta
Black Alliance for Just Immigration (BAJI)
Care In Action
Common Cause Georgia
Ecuadorian American Chamber of Commerce of the Southeast USA
Fair Fight Action
GALEO Impact Fund, Inc.
Georgia Coalition for the People’s Agenda
Georgia Muslim Voter Project
Latino Community Fund Georgia
Mi Familia Vota
Migrant Equity Southeast
New American Pathways
New Georgia Project
Refugee Women’s Network
Somos South Georgia
Urban League of Greater Atlanta
We Vote. We Win
Women Watch Afrika
Rev. Leo Seyij Allen
Preye Cobham, Esq.
Jason Esteves, Georgia State Senator
Héctor Gutiérrez, Forest Park City Councilman
Brenda Lopez Romero, Former State Representative
Josh McLaurin, Georgia State Senator