Congressman Jerrold Nadler Receives HIAS Tribute Award for Peace and Freedom

Posted on Tue, Sep 15, 2009 at 17:32 pm

(New York, NY) – HIAS, the international migration agency of the American Jewish community, presented Rep. Jerrold Nadler (D-NY) with its Tribute Award at a ceremony in Washington, DC on September 15. The award honors an individual “who has made a substantial contribution to the furtherance of peace, freedom, and security,” and recognizes Nadler’s efforts on behalf of immigrants and refugees.

Congressman Nadler has been working to ensure that comprehensive immigration reform includes family reunification, and is the lead sponsor of the Uniting American Families Act, which ensures that immigration law provides same-sex couples with the same immigration rights and protections afforded to heterosexual couples. He is the fourth ranking Democrat on the House Judiciary Committee and Chairs the Subcommittee on the Constitution, Civil Rights and Civil Liberties.

In presenting the Tribute Award to Rep. Nadler, Michael Rukin, chair of the HIAS board of directors said: “Over the 127 years of its existence, HIAS has had a number of strong supporters in the White House as well as in Congress. Rep. Jerrold Nadler stands out in the U.S. House of Representatives as a particularly strong advocate for the rights of immigrants and refugees, and we are humbled that he has agreed to accept the HIAS Tribute Award.”

In receiving the award, Rep. Nadler responded by speaking about what he called the “smaller issues” ….” We ought to be focusing on as we focus on the larger issues [of comprehensive immigration reform.] These so-called smaller issues – due process, political asylum, family reunification – affect a lot of people lives. And that’s the bottom line – as legislators what are we doing to affect people’s lives?

“I want to thank HIAS for all the work it’s done over these decades – promoting proper resettlement, promoting immigration and helping to save the Soviet Jews, and promoting immigration laws, and helping people in so many ways. I thank you for this honor and I intend to try to keep on earning it!”