By Eduardo A. de Oliveira, EthnicNEWz.org and FI2W reporter
Proclaiming that, “we need immigration laws that are consistent with our values,” Massachusetts Governor Deval Patrick held a wide-ranging press conference with ethnic media journalists at the State House in Boston. At the meeting, last Friday, the governor defended the creation of partnerships with immigrant communities, answered questions on topics such as bilingual education and driver’s licenses for undocumented immigrants, and commented on race relations under President Barack Obama.
The audience of about fifty journalists –more than 35 from immigrant communities– came from African-American, Brazilian, Chinese, Haitian, Japanese, Korean, Latino, Polish, Portuguese and other print, broadcast and Web media.
The governor made brief remarks at the opening of the press conference, saying democracy thrives when it maintains an unfiltered press. He then opened the floor to the journalists’ questions on topics from “anywhere in your agenda you want,” he said.
At least one topic formed a common thread for many of the journalists: access to driver’s licenses for undocumented workers, many of whom contribute to the state economy and pay taxes.