Washington, D.C. – U.S. Senator Charles E. Schumer along with Senator Bob Menendez (D-NJ) and Senator Kamala Harris (D-CA), joined the National Council of la Raza and the U.S. citizen children of recently deported parents urging Congress to reject the Trump administration’s immigration policies. Below are his remarks:

I want to thank the National Council of La Raza, Janet Murguia, for inviting me to speak.

I want to thank my dear friends and such great leaders on this and so many other issues in the Senate, Senator Menendez from New Jersey, Senator Harris from California, and all of you for being here. But a special thanks to Rose, Walter, Fatima, and Yuleni , for standing up. It takes a lot of courage to do what you’re doing, and we appreciate it and it may save lots and lots of families, so what you’re doing is brave and wonderful.

Now, from day one of his campaign, President Trump said that if elected he would go after immigrants. And that is exactly what he has done as president. He somehow wants America to think that all immigrants are criminals, terrorists, when we know immigrants are the American dream. And generation after generation after generation, including this one, has embodied just that.

President Trump’s budget cuts money on infrastructure, taking away jobs. No healthcare bill like he promised. But slashes in cancer research that save people’s lives – none of that. But what he’s done is target and persecute immigrants and refugees. The policies of his administration have instilled fear, pit us against each other, divided our country by ripping families like these apart.

And despite what they say – this doesn’t make our country any safer. In fact, it makes us less safe.

The President’s immigration policies are destroying local economies, causing chaos and panic in families in communities who have done nothing, nothing, nothing wrong. By using racial profiling and fear-mongering to target law abiding immigrants, the Trump administration is putting people with a traffic ticket or a status violation in the same category as serious violent criminals – wasting valuable and limited resources on people who should not be priorities for removal.

And that makes us less safe.Sadly, there are thousands of families going through the same pain and hardship as the families of Walter and Fatima, Yuleni, all of them are going through right now. Millions of children who are U.S. citizens with at least one undocumented parent who worry every day whether their mom or dad will be home when they get back from school – what a horrible thing for a kid to have to worry about, Americans.

And if this weren’t enough, the Trump administration is requesting additional DHS funding to build a border wall and hire a deportation force. Instead of spending taxpayer dollars on a pointless wall, we should be investing in creating jobs and fixing our infrastructure, not in separating American families, harming kids and local economies who are without workers who work so hard. And I’ve heard from small business leaders who are worried that they won’t have the workers they need, which gets our economy growing. Immigrants are an integral part of this country. Democrats will be vigilant and strong in our commitment to upholding the promise of America and shielding immigrants from President

Trump’s policies. Senate Democrats are prepared to fight this all the way. My message to all of you: keep organizing, keep calling, keep marching. Your voices are heard loud and clear, your actions – as what we saw happen with healthcare – make a difference every single day.

I thank La Raza for inviting me.