Small Businesses Celebrate Historic Breakthrough on Immigration

Years of Courage and Persistence Pay Off in Huge Step Forward for Immigration Reform
Millions of immigrant families are celebrating the historic breakthrough on immigration that will provide the opportunity for many to remain in the U.S. and continue to contribute to America.

President Obama’s executive order means that for now nearly half of the undocumented immigrants living in America will no longer be afraid they will be deported. The other half’s fears should also lessen because new reforms should begin to reign in over-zealous enforcement agencies.

“This is a major victory for the immigrant rights movement in American and for the millions of immigrants who stood up and were unafraid. It’s a long overdue step toward justice,” said Stephen Michael, Campaigns Manager of The Main Street Alliance.

Makini Howell, owner and Executive Chef of Plum Bistro, Seattle, WA

Across the country The Main Street Alliance has been working tirelessly with the small business community to fight for fair and just reform to fix our nation’s broken immigration system, keep our families together and our small businesses thriving.

Makini Howell, owner of Plum Bistro in Seattle, WA appeared on the Nightly Business Report last night, joining together with those who called on President Obama to take bold action in September, Main Street Alliance business owners from all across the country support the President, showing that administrative action to protect immigrants makes business sense.

“As a small business owner, I see the positive impact immigrants have on our economy,” said Jose Gonzalez, President of Tu Casa Real Estate in Salem, OR. “Many of my customers are immigrants, and it makes me so happy to know that this year, millions more families across the country will be able to celebrate Thanksgiving and the holiday season without fear that the broken immigration system will tear families and communities apart.”

Jim Gilbert, owner of Northwoods Nursery & One Green World in Molalla & Portland, OR and Jose Gonzalez, President of TU Casa Real Estate in Salem, OR Jim Gilbert, owner of Northwoods Nursery & One Green World in Molalla & Portland, OR and Jose Gonzalez, President of TU Casa Real Estate in Salem, OR

Because the deferred action program announced by President Obama does not cover all 11 million undocumented immigrants in the U.S. and the action is not permanent, Michael vowed to keep fighting for comprehensive immigration reform.

“Our fight is not over until everyone has a path to citizenship and no one lives in fear that their family will be separated. After all, when our families and communities are strong, our small businesses thrive,” Stephen Michael said.

Small business owners and families celebrated President Obama’s executive order, but added words of caution for anyone who attempts to reverse this action, including congressional Republicans.

“Countless families have been torn apart because of our patchwork of failed and mismanaged immigration policies. We will never allow that to happen again and will stand up to those who put politics ahead of families,” said said Jim Gilbert, Owner of Northwoods Nursery and One Green World in Molalla and Portland, OR. “To those who would try to take this victory away, who would tell immigrant families they are not welcome, you are on the wrong side of history. Our communities, families, and small businesses need this to help strengthen our economy.”

“Today, America is living up to its promise of life, liberty and the pursuit of happiness,” said Peter Tofalvi, owner of Abacus Energy Solutions in Beaverton, OR. “Today, millions of families will now be able to pursue the American Dream.”

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