February 24, 2011
Religion and U.S. Immigration Reform
Immigration reform remains one of the most contested issues in American politics and will likely play an important role in the 2012 presidential campaign. Religious communities, among the most forceful advocates of immigration reform in the last electoral cycle, are reassessing lessons learned and strategies going forward. This symposium brought together representatives of faith communities and researchers to address both their lobbying efforts and strategies used to facilitate immigrant integration into American society. It was sponsored by Georgetown University's Institute for the Study of International Migration, the Woodstock Theological Center at Georgetown University, and the Berkley Center for Religion, Peace, & World Affairs at Georgetown University, and was made possible through the generous support of the Henry Luce Foundation and the Luce/SFS Program on Religion and International Affairs.
2:30 pm-4:00 pm
First panel: Religious Advocacy and Immigration Policy
Chair: Susan Martin, Donald G. Herzberg Chair in International Migration, Institute for the Study of International Migration, Georgetown University
Daniel Cox, Research Director, Public Religion Research Institute
Richard Land, President of the Southern Baptist Convention's Ethics & Religious Liberty Commission
Kevin Appleby, Director of Migration Policy and Public Affairs, U.S. Conference of Catholic Bishops.
Melanie Nezer, Senior Director, US Programs and Advocacy, Hebrew Immigrant Aid Society
1. How have religious communities engaged the immigration reform policy debate?
2. How would you gauge the success or failure of immigration reform advocacy on the part of religious communities? What best explains different outcomes?
3. How do you see the future of such policy advocacy? What should religious communities do differently going forward?
Second Panel: Faith Communities and Immigrant Integration
Chair: Katherine Marshall, Berkley Center for Religion, Peace, and World Affairs, Georgetown University
Alex Stepick, Director of the Immigration and Ethnicity Institute and Professor of Anthropology & Sociology at Florida International University in Miami
Raleigh Bailey, Senior Research Scientist in the School of Human Environmental Sciences at UNCG
Fariyal Ross-Sheriff, School of Social Work, Howard University
Elzbieta M. Gozdziak, Research Director and International Migration Editor, Institute for the Study of International Migration, Georgetown University
1. How are faith communities assisting with the social, cultural, and economic integration of immigrants in US society?
2. What role are faith-based educational institutions playing in furthering this immigration?
3. Where are we seeing positive examples of cooperation between local governments and religious organizations in furthering immigration?
Mr. Appleby directs the MRS Office of Migration and Refugee Policy and assists the bishops in the development and promotion of migration and refugee policy positions within the context of the Church's social and moral teaching; implements...
Raleigh Bailey, Ph.D., was founding Director of the Center for New North Carolinians (CNNC) at UNCG and Senior Research Scientist in the School of Human Environmental Sciences at UNCG. In 2001, CNNC was established by the UNC Board of Governors to...
Daniel Cox is the director of research and co-founder of Public Religion Research Institute, a nonprofit, nonpartisan research and education organization specializing in research at the intersection of religion, values, and public policy. Prior to...
Institute for the Study of International Migration
Richard Land has served as president of the Southern Baptist Convention's Ethics and Religious Liberty Commission since 1988. Land has also served as president of the Southern Baptist Convention. He is a prolific author and host of the radio shows...
Katherine Marshall is a Senior Fellow at the Berkley Center for Religion, Peace, and World Affairs, where she leads the Center's program on Religion and Global Development. After a long career in the development field, including several leadership...
Susan Martin, Georgetown University's Donald G. Herzberg Associate Professor of International Migration, serves as the Executive Director of the Institute for the Study of International Migration in the School of Foreign Service. An expert on...
Melanie Nezer is Senior Director for U.S. Programs & Advocacy for HIAS. Ms. Nezer directs HIAS Washington, DC office and coordinates HIAS immigration and refugee services department. Ms. Nezer is actively involved with education and advocacy on...
Dr. Fariyal Ross-Sheriff is a graduate professor and the Director of Ph.D. degree Program in Social Work at Howard University. Her area of specialization is displaced populations. These populations include two major groups: refugees, immigrants...
Dr. Stepick is currently Director of the Immigration and Ethnicity Institute and Professor of Anthropology & Sociology at Florida International University in Miami. He has been conducting research on the impact of immigration on Miami for the past...