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Jewish groups at White House immigration confab

WASHINGTON (JTA) — Several Jewish groups sent representatives to a White House strategy session on immigration reform.

Represented at the meeting Thursday were the Hebrew Immigrant Aid Society, the National Council of Jewish Women and the American Jewish Committee.

The main message conveyed at the meeting by Homeland Security Secretary Janet Napolitano was that immigration reform was on hold until next year, Mark Hetfield, HIAS’ senior vice president for policy, told JTA.

There was too much on the White House agenda now with health care reform, stimulus packages and foreign affairs for immigration to get careful treatement, the representatives were told.

President Obama also stopped into the meeting to deliver greetings.

The session, with over a hundred in attendance, broke up into working groups that dealt with bringing undocumented laborers out of the shadows, addressing the needs of labor and business, controlling borders, and family reunification.

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