Why The Time For Immigration Reform Is Now

My name is Mitch Azarcon and I am a proud member of SEIU Healthcare MN working at Rochester Methodist Hospital as a Surgical Core Tech.

Mitch speaking at a rally/press conference supporting immigration reform.

In 1990 my family and I emigrated here from the Philippines.  My mom knew that the United States is where she wanted to live and raise a family.  She applied to come here when she was single and updated all her paperwork when she got married, and after each of her 3 children.  I remember when we were growing up she always said “one day we will live in the United States.”  I was 20 when we finally came to the US; in total it took 25 years.

As President Obama said, “we are a nation of immigrants.”  We all do our part to contribute.  I am a surgical tech.  My brother is a nursing assistant.  My sister just graduated from college and started her first job.  Our country is better for having hardworking immigrants as contributing members of our communities.  Young people especially, like the DREAMERS, have a lot to contribute and we should give them the chance to fulfill their full potential.

America is my home and I am an active citizen.  That is why I was active as a member political organizer during this last election.  I knocked on doors, phone banked, passed out flyers, and did everything in my power to participate. SEIU helped elect leaders who will do the right thing for immigrants and this country.

That is why I am happy that President Obama and a bipartisan group of Congress are working on a comprehensive set of immigration reform.  We need commonsense immigration reform that does not take 25 years like it did for my mom and that allows young people to build a brighter future.

Reverend Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. once said that, “The time is always right to do what is right.”  The time for immigration reform is now.  I am ready now.  Our communities are ready now.  So we will start organizing for action now!

Mitch has been active in SEIU since October of 2011 when she participated in the Week of Action, coordinated and organized by Minnesotans For a Fair Economy. Since then, she has participated in rallies and protests, including volunteering for civil disobedience during the 99% Spring Week of Action on April 2012. In the same year, she organized SEIU members in the campaign to help defeat the marriage amendment and the Voter restriction amendment, and lead three member conversation trainings. Currently, she is organizing a Lavender Caucus for all MN SEIU locals.


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