New Jersey’s immigrant communities have expressed their disapproval of President Joe Biden’s recently announced budget proposal, citing its lack of sufficient investment in the sector as a major point of contention.
In a joint statement released Wednesday, the New Jersey Alliance of Immigrant Rights (NJAIR), a coalition of more than 50 organizations, highlighted the glaring deficiencies in Biden’s proposed budget. The proposed budget, they argued, fails to provide adequate funding for programs that directly support and protect the state’s immigrant population.
“The current budget proposal fails to provide the necessary resources to protect and empower our immigrant communities,” said Sarah Blaine, an NJAIR spokesperson. “It is disappointing that the proposed budget does not adequately address the needs of our immigrant communities, especially in the face of an unprecedented pandemic that has disproportionately impacted our people.”
The NJAIR statement further highlighted the fact that the proposed budget does not allocate any funding for the Immigrant Legal Resource Center, a national nonprofit that provides free legal assistance to low-income immigrants. Additionally, the group noted that the budget does not include any additional funding for the Office of Refugee Resettlement, which provides assistance to newly arrived refugees.
The group also argued that the budget fails to provide adequate funding for immigrant integration programs, such as language and job training courses. Without such programs, immigrants are unable to gain the necessary skills to effectively participate in the labor force and become fully integrated members of society.
“The proposed budget does not provide the necessary resources to ensure that our immigrant communities can fully and successfully integrate into society,” Blaine said. “We urge the Biden administration to reconsider its budget priorities and invest in programs that will help our immigrant communities achieve their full potential.”
Overall, the NJAIR coalition expressed its dissatisfaction with the proposed budget and urged the Biden administration to make the necessary changes in order to ensure that immigrant communities are properly supported and protected.