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Executive Perspectives

EXECUTIVE PERSPECTIVE: A Reflection on the Impact of Immigration on Society

William C. Silverman

26 Feb 2018

In this reflection from Bill Silverman, Partner at Proskauer, a large global law firm, we hear about the importance of the immigrant experience and its impacts.  Immigration has been and will continue to be a key driver of the global economy and the vitality of culture.  Tim Nixon, Managing Editor, Sustainability.

Source: Proskauer for Good

On January 30, Proskauer sponsored a panel discussion alongside the Hispanic National Bar Association and the Dominican Bar Association, titled “International Perspectives on Immigration:  Personal Reflections on the Impact of Immigration on Our Society.”  In 2017, over 200 Proskauer lawyers worked on immigration-related pro bono matters on behalf of individuals seeking asylum, unaccompanied minors, and victims of domestic violence and human trafficking.

Understanding the attitudes, experiences, and approaches of other countries with respect to immigration is vitally important. We were proud to welcome to our office the New York Consuls General of the Dominican Republic, Mexico, Israel and Colombia, who shared individual stories of immigration. They also addressed some of the most pressing issues of the day regarding immigration in the United States, Latin America and Israel.

Maria Isabel Nieto, the Colombian Consul General, spoke about the challenges her country is facing with the influx of more than 500,000 people fleeing Venezuela.  Dani Dayan, the Israeli Consul General, discussed his experience immigrating to Israel from Argentina and the challenges of receiving refugees.  Consul General Carlos Castillo of the Dominican Republic emphasized the great impact immigrants from the Dominican Republic have had on New York City, highlighting that two million New Yorkers are of Hispanic heritage. Diego Gomez Pickering, the Consul General of Mexico, addressed serious issues facing Mexican immigrants in the U.S.

Gaining an international perspective through events like this enables us to put our own country’s challenges in context, underscores the importance of treating immigrants fairly while upholding the law, and makes us better informed citizens and more effective advocates.

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