Thousands of footsteps echoed through the nation as Martin Luther King Jr. led the Freedom Marchers to the state capitol in Alabama in 1965; wanting their cries for equality to be heard. Forty eight years after, not only did the African Americans earn their rights to live equally in the United States, another mile stone was achieved in their history when the first black president was elected for his second term.
Similarly, the Philippines recovered its freedom from a dictator president in 1986 through a “bloodless revolution.” Hundreds and thousands of Filipinos; men, women, adults, and children, joined arm-to-arm and marched towards “Malacanang” to let their voices to be heard; wanting to be free from the oppression brought by the dictator government.
Protesters faced heavily armed soldiers and tanks as they approached the gates of the Philippine President’s office. Nuns, priests, students, office workers, government officials continuously prayed for several days and nights. They are praying for guidance to enlighten the president to step down and free the people, and at the same time, they are praying for each protester’s safety.
For several days and nights, the military stayed loyal to the president, however, the protesters stood stronger. Armed with prayers and hope, they eagerly reached out to the hungry and tired soldiers. They provided food and drinks, flowers, and even included them in their prayers. After days of praying and waiting, the soldiers were touched by the protesters’ determination and sincerity and joined the peaceful revolution. Finally, they realized that they all want the same thing, “freedom.”
Today, both the United States and the Philippines have gained their democracy, and we wanted to think that both are free from the oppressions of the past, however, that is not the case. People in both countries are fighting for a different kind of freedom.
Immigrants living in the United States, for instance, are struggling to live fairly in a country they consider as their second home or a safe haven. Many desire to live in the United States but, very few were given the opportunity to. As a result, many have diverted to “other” means of coming and living in the U.S.
As of today, there are more than eleven million undocumented immigrants, including their children, living in the United States. Many undocumented immigrants have been striving and struggling to live their lives in the United States peacefully and productively to the best of their abilities. The government tried different programs and policies to address this growing number of undocumented immigrants.
The government is just realizing the benefits undocumented immigrants can bring in the U.S. economy once they became legal residents of the country. However, before everything else, the government needs to reflect and reformulate the immigration policies. Many believed that the existing policies are not sufficient to address the growing immigration issues.
With the progress of the current debate in the proposed comprehensive immigration reform, many are optimistic that the new bill will be able to address not only the existing immigration issues but, the underlying economic issues as well.
CSI Professionals have been advocating for diversity, especially in the U.S. workforce for almost eighteen (18) years. By assisting and guiding immigrant hopefuls to the “right” way to reach for their “American Dreams,” CSI stands for fair and just immigration procedures for immigrant hopefuls to become legal citizens of the United States.