Wilmington cleaner Jose Luz Sanchez’s passion for immigration reform is what led him to Washington, D.C. for two weeks to lobby members of Congress. As part of a brigade focused on immigration reform, Jose was able to connect with 32BJ members from other states.
“It was great getting to know each other and sharing our own immigration stories,” said Jose. “We are all united in this fight.”
After emigrating from Mexico to the U.S. in 1998, Jose faced an uncertain future. Fifteen years later, he has a good union job, his papers and is walking through the halls of Congress to fight for those still living in the shadows.
“Even though I have my papers, I am doing this for the others who are still fighting. This fight is for people who don’t have their papers and face being separated from their families. I know so many others in my community who are still struggling. They’re undocumented and don’t have a chance.”
For Jose, 32BJ’s fight for worker justice and immigrant justice are inseparable. When Jose joined 32BJ two years ago, he saw his wages rose from $8.50 to $10.70 per hour with benefits.
“The union is important to me because it gives me a good contract and a fair shot at the American Dream. I am also proud that my union is fighting for immigration reform,” added Jose. “You don’t see many other unions fighting for immigrant justice.”