Somerville, MA. Recently a group of immigrant rights advocacy organizations travelled to the Massachusetts State House to deliver a letter to Governor Deval Patrick and President-elect Barak Obama demanding more fair and just immigration policies. Youth members from the Welcome Project and Centro Presente both of Somerville, presented their letters to the Governor’s office as part of the Welcoming, MA campaign.

Welcoming, MA is an initiative that seeks to affirm Massachusetts as a Commonwealth that respects the dignity of all people and to create a more welcoming environment for immigrants.

«We are all human beings. I want to live in a city where I can be treated as an equal and not be discriminated by my color and language,» said Tony Perez a youth member from Centro Presente.

«Welcoming MA is a campaign that welcomes immigrants into Massachusetts and that follows the concept of the declaration of independence, that all men are created equal» said Clivia Camara a youth member from the Welcome Project.

«People may honestly differ on the specific solutions to immigration reform but there is really no justification for anyone to not support a simple pledge to treat all people with the human dignity they deserve. It’s inspiring to see young people from immigrant families taking the lead in asking that all people, regardless of their national origin or status, be treated with dignity and respect,» said Warren Goldstein-Gelb, director of The Welcome Project in Somerville.

«We are very happy to have our youth members active in this campaign. It is very important to have them involved in the activities but most important is to have them moving a process forward where they can talk about the challenges that we have as a community and also to talk about the positive contributions that we as immigrants give to this society. Their voices are very important in this process,» said Patricia Montes, Centro Presente’s Executive Director.

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