WASHINGTON - The AFL-CIO is launching a presidential style mass nationwide campaign, with worksite visits, leafleting and more, for comprehensive immigration reform, emphasizing citizenship and worker rights for the nation's 11 million undocumented workers.
The Feb. 7 announcement by federation President Richard Trumka and Maria Elena Durazo, chair of the AFL-CIO Immigration Committee and Executive Secretary-Treasurer of the L.A. County Federation of Labor, comes after Trumka and other leaders of progressive groups discussed immigration with Democratic President Barack Obama in an Oval Office meeting on Feb. 5.
And Trumka said the fed is working closely with the U.S. Chamber of Commerce on the one area of immigration where the two groups strongly disagreed in the past: Guest workers.
He flatly added that the AFL-CIO opposes past guest worker programs that brought in millions of workers, mostly in farms, with no protections and a lot of exploitation. Such "bracero" programs are unacceptable, Trumka said.