ASK THE CANDIDATES: Where do you stand on immigration and refugee policies?

  • What will you do to ensure the U.S. upholds national and international law by giving those fleeing violence and persecution safe and fair opportunities to seek asylum? What will you do to make sure no families are separated due to immigration enforcement or detention? What would you include in your approach to immigration enforcement on the U.S.-Mexico border?
  • How will you ensure that government responses to protect public health, such as the COVID-19 pandemic response, are fully inclusive of immigrant and refugee communities? What policies will you pursue to expand access to healthcare and multilingual information, as well as financial assistance, during any pandemic response?
  • Will you commit to increasing the annual refugee cap? How will you assist support for refugees and asylees once they are in the U.S.?
  • Do you support a pathway to citizenship for DREAMers and recipients of Temporary Protected Status (TPS) that is independent of increased funding for ICE? How do you plan to otherwise improve our immigration system and to reduce backlogs on humanitarian, family, and employment-based visas?
  • Do you believe state and local law enforcement resources should be used to assist in ICE operations? How would you limit state or local law enforcement collaboration with ICE? What will you do to ensure North Carolina’s courthouses, schools, and medical facilities are safe from immigration enforcement operations?

The Trump Administration is intentionally stoking fear and misinformation about immigrants and refugees. Through misguided and dangerous policy decisions, as well as anti-immigrant rhetoric and fear mongering, President Trump has torn families apart, shirked international obligations, worked to exclude people of color and people of low or moderate incomes from the U.S.


  • Immigrants make up nearly 8 percent of North Carolina’s population and 11 percent of the state’s labor force. They are our neighbors, classmates, co-workers, and family members. They operate roughly 20 percent of North Carolina’s Main Street businesses, and account for 80 percent of the net new Main Street businesses opened in the last two decades.
  • There are almost 34,000 individuals in North Carolina who are eligible for DACA and nearly 12,000 who are eligible for TPS.
  • Since January 2017, the Trump Administration has separated more than 5,400 children from their families at the border.
  • The Trump Administration recently set the ceiling for 2020 refugee resettlements to the United States at 18,000, 16 percent of the 110,000-person cap that existed when Trump took office.
  • As of February 2020, there are over 1 million cases pending in the immigration court system, almost double the number of cases (516,031) that were pending at the end of 2016.
  • More than 20 other states guarantee in-state tuition for qualified high school graduates, regardless of their immigration status. Currently, undocumented students and DACA beneficiaries are charged out-of-state tuition, even if they have lived in North Carolina for most of their lives and have graduated in good standing from a North Carolina high school.