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Bishop Malone joins immigration debate

Mike Desmond/wbfo news

Catholic Bishop Richard Malone says the U.S. needs a comprehensive solution to the immigration problem. "They're in a perilous situation," Malone said of the nation's 11 million illegal immigrants. "No one says it's an easy thing, but we really do think the government's got to deal with it."

The bishop spoke last night during a panel discussion in Catholic Academy of West Buffalo. The Catholic Bishops of America are looking for a comprehensive solution to the 11 million illegal residents. 

The  bishop believes it's a special problem in the Catholic community because many are of his religion.

"You think of families that have been split asunder because parents have come over a long time ago and they are still not legally citizens but they may have...children born here and so the child is automatically a U.S. citizen," Bishop Malone said.

"You've got whole communities that are alienated."

Bishop Malone says many of those immigrants are working at jobs many others won't do, providing a service to the public.

Immigration lawyer Michael Marszalkowski says many previous attempts to work on the immigration issue have turned the legal situation into a muddle. He says it's a notable problem in Buffalo Niagara on the Canadian border, although there are different issues from along the border with Mexico.

Mike Desmond is one of Western New York’s most experienced reporters, having spent nearly a half-century covering the region for newspapers, television stations and public radio. He has been with WBFO and its predecessor, WNED-AM, since 1988. As a reporter for WBFO, he has covered literally thousands of stories involving education, science, business, the environment and many other issues. Mike has been a long-time theater reviewer for a variety of publications and was formerly a part-time reporter for The New York Times.