Valley Ag leaders continue to expand their push for immigration reform

FRESNO, Calif. (KFSN) -- Valley Ag leaders continue to expand their push for immigration reform.

Alan Ortega earned an engineering degree from Fresno State but he is worried his hard work will go for naught if no progress is made on DACA.

"We are not bad people like some people claim we are. We don't bring destruction, crime, none of that. If anything, we bring positivity," said DACA recipient Alan Ortega.

Valley farmers have long relied on an immigrant workforce.

"We just want them to understand how important they are not, just to us as our workers, but to provide food for our country," said Westside farmer Joe Del Bosque.

But some pointed out reform can be a tough sell in states, which do not rely heavily on an undocumented immigrant workforce.

"They feel like they don't have to necessarily address the question today because it's not their political reality for them. But for us not only is it our political reality to address the question of immigration in a reasonable, sensible manner but it's an economic one," said Chris Valadez.

Avenal boxer Jose Ramirez fights for water but come March when he battles for a world title, his new cause will be immigration reform.

"We've come up with a program that's called, Pro-Immigrant and Proud, and that is going to be featured on Jose's trunks, his shorts. But it's also going to dominate the tones of the press conferences," said Rick Mirigian.

The group hopes to gain the support of other pro athletes because they say talking to lawmakers has not been effective.

"We either get it done now. After 2018 if nothing is done at all then we've all failed," said Manuel Cunha.
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