Senators' Letter Calls for Humane Immigration Reform

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WASHINGTON -- Four Democratic Senators circulated a letter to their colleagues Wednesday, laying out the civil and human rights values they believe should be considered as Congress discusses immigration reform. The letter, obtained by ImpreMedia, comes a week before the first immigration hearing in the Senate. It is signed by Senators Patrick Leahy (D-Vt.), Christopher Coons (D-Del.), Richard Blumenthal (D-Co) and Mazie Hirono (D-Hawaii). The letter calls for substantial reforms to the country's immigration system, which currently separates families and detains individuals who pose no threat to public safety, including those seeking asylum.

"Our laws mandate detention or deportation for many people, denying them access to a hearing before a judge, without guaranteeing legal counsel for those who cannot afford it," states the letter.

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