14 Jul 2011

US committee to hear CNMI discrimination complaint

3:12 pm on 14 July 2011

A US house subcommittee will hear submissions overnight on a bill, which a critic describes as discriminating against non-resident workers in the Northern Marianas.

The bill proposed by Delegate Gregorio Kilili Sablan's bill grants CNMI-resident only status to certain groups, including spouses or parents of US citizens, permanent residents, and some people born in CNMI in the 1970s.

A human rights advocate, Wendy Doromal, says that does not cover all of the 16,000 non-resident workers in CNMI.

She says the bill also limits the rights to travel and live in the US of those groups that it does cover.

"I see it as discriminatory, I see it as anti-American, I see it as undemocratic. I don't think our country should look at immigrants especially when they have been there 30 years as labour units rather than as future citizens."

Wendy Doromal plans to travel to Washington to submit written testimony to the public hearing.