A History of Standing Up for Immigrants
In response to the backlash against immigrant communities after 9/11, Pramila created OneAmerica (formerly called Hate Free Zone) to fight back against the civil liberties abuses of the Bush Administration against Arabs, Muslims and South Asians, and protecting thousands across the country from deportation and detention. As Executive Director for 11 years, she helped organize tens of thousands of diverse immigrants in the fight for immigration reform, including bringing a gender lens to immigration and working to keep families together. She also led efforts for immigrant integration in Washington state, registering 23,000 New Americans to vote, serving as Vice Chair of the Governor’s New Americans Policy Council, and helping to establish the Office of Immigrant and Refugee Affairs in Seattle.
Under Pramila’s leadership, OneAmerica grew into the largest immigrant advocacy organization in the state, and played a key role in passing the 2014 DREAM Act, protecting drivers licenses for all residents regardless of citizenship, and passing a New Americans Executive Order that helped facilitate immigrant integration through citizenship, English Language learning and cross-cultural understanding.
Enacting Just and Humane Comprehensive Immigration Reform
Our immigration policies should reflect our values of family, human dignity and work. In Congress, Pramila will work to establish a federal Office for Immigrant Integration, as well as to pass just and humane immigration reform that provides legalization and a path to citizenship for 11 million undocumented immigrants, reunites families, protects immigrant workers on the job, and fully embraces the contributions that immigrants make to our society.
Ensuring America Continues to Welcome Refugees
America has always been a country that has welcomed refugees from around the world who are escaping economic, political and social turmoil. Pramila believes this is a critically important role for America to play in a world of global migration where more than 1 billion people are on the move. In Congress, she will work to ensure we continue to accept refugees in numbers that reflect America’s global status in the world and history of compassion, and that we provide them with the support and services needed once here.