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MIRA’s 2015 Legislative Agenda

14 January 2015 No Comment

January 14, 2015

Please note: Since we are still at the very beginning of the session, so far most bills have not been introduced and few of them have been assigned their numbers. The deadline for introducing bills is Monday, Jan 19, two days before Civic Engagement Day. We are sharing the pro-immigrant proposals for this session, and once we have the bill numbers and titles for all the bill, we will send those to you.

The following are the proposals that MIRA is supporting; these bills would represent significant change in the everyday lives of immigrants in our state, and we are working to gain the support of both Republican and Democratic legislators for these proposals. 

Tuition Equity: In State Tuition for undocumented high school graduates who want to enroll in community colleges or institutions for higher learning (see following article for details on the proposal). Currently, the cost of “international tuition” is prohibitive for these students. The bill is a joint effort by MIRA and the Mississippi American Civil Liberties Union.

Comprehensive Worker’s Compensation Reform 
Mississippi has the worst laws covering injured workers and workers killed on the job.

Raise the State minimum wage to $15/hour

Bad Boss Tax: Workers who don’t receive a living wage often have to access public benefits to survive – under this proposal, their employers would have to return to state funds the cost to tax payers for those benefits (check out the In These Times article on the idea) Lead author is Rep. Jim Evans, President of MIRA.

Driver’s license for all drivers in Mississippi regardless of immigration status. Lead author is Rep. Jim Evans, President of MIRA.

Prohibit racial profiling including for immigration status (no “papers please”) Lead author is Rep. Jim Evans, President of MIRA.

Fully fund the Mississippi Adequate Education Program This affects children in K-12 schools for all, regardless of immigration status. See these notes on the MAEP from Jackson Free Press.

Every year we see a plethora of racist, anti-immigrant bills, aimed at making Mississippi a hostile place for immigrants to live and work. This year will be no exception, especially in light of all the anger and hatred stirred up in response to the President’s Executive Order that expanded DACA created DAPA (Deferred Action for Parental Accountability).

We will vehemently oppose:

Any and all anti-immigrant bills designed to make life miserable for immigrants to force them out of Mississippi.

Oppose all other proposals that compromise any human or worker’s rights for residents of our state.

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