Apple and Amazon write letter supporting undocumented immigrants

Apple and Amazon join 100 companies to support the DREAM Act to help undocumented youth.

Apple logo after Apple supprts undocumented immigrants Source: Bloomberg

Amazon and Apple are weighing in on the political debate about immigration. They have joined other tech companies to write a letter to the US Congress to pass the Development, Relief, and Education for Alien Minors(DREAM) Act to help 700,000 undocumented youth stay in the US.

Why are tech companies supporting Dreamers?

The undocumented youth, or Dreamers, are at the center of a major immigration fight in the US. US President, Donald Trump, and many of his fellow Republicans wants to deport young adults that were brought to US by their parents through undocumented immigration. Many tech companies and Democrats are against Trump’s hardline approach to immigration and want reforms to help the youth stay in the US. They wrote a letter to Congress to urge them to find a bipartisan solution to immigration reform.

‘With the re-opening of the federal government and the presumptive restart of immigration and border security negotiations, now is the time for Congress to pass a law to provide Dreamers the certainty they need. These are our friends, neighbors, and coworkers, and they should not have to wait for court cases to be decided to determine their fate when Congress can act now,’ wrote the companies.

‘We have seen time and again that the overwhelming majority of Americans of all political backgrounds agree that we should protect Dreamers from deportation. American employers and hundreds of thousands of Dreamers are counting on you to pass bipartisan, permanent legislative protection for Dreamers without further delay,’ added the companies in the letter.

Are tech companies helping or hurting Dreamers?

While companies like Amazon claim to want to help undocumented workers, immigration rights groups like the American Civil Liberties Union(ACLU), says that the company benefits from deporting undocumented immigrants. They say that the online retailer sells its facial recognition software, Rekognition, to law enforcement agencies that target undocumented migrant workers.

‘Amazon says Rekognition can be used to identify people of interest raising the possibility that those labeled suspicious by governments—such as undocumented immigrants-will be seen as fair game for Rekognition surveillance,’ wrote the ACLU.

Immigration reform is a complicated issue that affects the US in many ways, from the emotional toll on families to the reported $90 billion in lost tax revenue if undocumented immigrants are deported. Apple and Amazon are just the latest organisations trying to get Congress to end the long impasse and find a solution to the problem.


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