Congressman Ruben Gallego Co-Sponsors Legislation to Change the Term “Alien” in Federal Law
Washington, DC – Congressman Ruben Gallego signed up as a co-sponsor to H.R. 3785, a bill introduced by Congressman Joaquin Castro (D-TX) that would remove the offensive and arcane language characterizing immigrants as “aliens” from federal law and agency documentation.
The Correcting Hurtful and Alienating Names in Government Expression (CHANGE) Act would strike all instances of the word “alien” from the U.S. code and replace it with “foreign national.” The term “illegal alien” would be replaced with the term “undocumented foreign national.” The bill would also prohibit executive agencies from using “alien” or “illegal alien” in any signage or literature.
Congressman Ruben Gallego released the following statement:
“Words matter. The term ‘alien’ is dehumanizing and offensive, and contributes to the prejudice and xenophobia that have become a too-familiar part of the national conversation on immigration.
“Immigrants, with or without status, are human beings and deserve to be treated with respect. The CHANGE Act will take a long overdue step in acknowledging this simple fact, and I hope it will help to change the dialogue as we move forward with efforts to fix our nation’s broken immigration system.”