Gutierrez joined S. Truett Cathy, founder and chairman of Chick-fil-A; Charles Hoff, general counsel and board member of the Georgia Restaurant Association; Stevan Porter, president, the Americas, for InterContinental Hotels Group, and other Atlanta business leaders in the restaurant, construction and agriculture industries, to discuss President Bush's plan for comprehensive immigration reform.
"We thank Secretary Gutierrez for addressing the importance of immigration to the American economy. It is fitting that the Secretary chose to hold today's roundtable discussion on comprehensive immigration reform at a restaurant," said Steven Anderson, president and ceo of the trade group. "The restaurant industry is the largest private-sector employer and the largest employer of immigrant and foreign-born employees.
In May, the U.S. Senate reached a critical bipartisan compromise that would provide employment opportunities to immigrants when no U.S. workers are available. This agreement would also enable undocumented immigrants and their families to become full members of society if they can demonstrate that they have satisfied a number of requirements, including passing background checks, learning English and paying a fine.
As co-chair of the Essential Worker Immigration Coalition (EWIC), the National Restaurant Association has been a leader within the business community in supporting comprehensive reform for nearly seven years. EWIC is comprised of more than 40 national businesses and trade associations seeking reform of America's broken immigration system.
"The National Restaurant Association stands with President Bush, and we urge the House and Senate to take the crucial steps toward securing our borders and ensuring economic stability within the restaurant industry and across the nation," said Anderson.