The utterly broken and dysfunctional U.S.immigration system has caused farmers and other businesses to struggle to find workers while the federal government is trying to deport employees, hurting California’s economy in the process. It has deported those who have been productive and hard working residents of the state of California. The federal government does not provide an adequate path to citizenship for people who have lived in California for many years, nor do they issue enough temporary guest work visas to keep up with the demands of California’s economy. Meanwhile ICE is destroying California families and often causing irreparable harm to the spouses and children of undocumented people when they are ripped from their homes and sent back to countries they often barely know.
The California National Party proposes that the California government create a working group of experts with the goal of enacting a statewide plan to deal with immigration and California residency. This plan should be consistent with the following:
California’s unique global position allows it to welcome and cultivate diverse peoples and cultures from all over the planet. To that end, the California National Party states that:
- We support the right of California to issue visas to foreign nationals in order to allow them to enter, work, study, and reside in California either with the cooperation of the U.S. Federal Government, or upon independence if the Federal Government refuses to cooperate.
- As soon as is feasible, California shall implement a program to retain in California higher education graduates and other high skilled professionals from other nations as they make us stronger and richer. This program will also include help to find jobs while using the skills and education of such individuals to strengthen California’s economy and culture.
- Treat child immigrants as children and not adults. Currently the federal immigration system often perpetuates the fiction that children make choices that they do not actually make, in violation of the UN Charter. Children brought to California do not have the ability to be considered adults able to make such decisions, and they should rather be treated with the compassion and decency that is the right of all children.
- California must guarantee the right to public education, including higher education, for all children in California regardless of immigration status.
- The California National Party opposes the construction of any wall along the southern border of California. If such a wall is built, it should be removed at the earliest time such action is feasible.
- Modify Free Trade Agreements to ease the movement of people across borders, especially with Mexico, Canada, and Pacific Rim nations.
- California must work with all stakeholders to improve the economies of its neighbors, in a mutually beneficial way, in order to reduce the need for immigration. In order to accomplish this goal, California shall create an investment fund to help all neighboring countries, and all countries with substantial yearly California immigration, to develop such that their economies grow, and help California’s grow, in order to reduce the need for immigration into California.
- To anyone who has five contiguous years of residency in California, committed no felony in California during that period, and who intends to remain in California indefinitely, California shall issue a residency permit that will allow that individual to legally work and live in California. The residency permit shall also grant the right of any such California resident who is at least 18 years of age to vote in local and state elections in California.
- All agents of the State of California shall be instructed to respect California residency permits so issued, to never turn over any holder of such a permit to any federal immigration agents under any circumstances, and to not interfere with any Californian who holds a duly issued residency permit.
- No language requirement shall be imposed to obtain a California residency permit nor, later, for Californian citizenship. Upon independence, anyone holding a California residency permit will be issued full citizenship in the California Republic.
Guest Worker Program
- California should create a guest worker program operated by the counties in order to best meet their needs. These programs will be coordinated by a state-wide agency.
- Each county shall submit a guest worker program proposal that outlines its guest worker labor needs. Counties can also choose to not seek any guest workers if they have no such needs.
- California shall implement this plan as soon as is feasible, either with the cooperation of the U.S. Federal Government, or upon independence, if the Federal Government refuses to cooperate in this county-based guest worker program.