By January 19, Congress Must Vote On A Solution That Helps People Without Hurting People
Washington, DC – Today, preliminary details of bipartisan negotiations on protecting immigrant youth began to come to light. While no legislative language has been released, the news signals momentum in the direction of protecting millions from deportation.
Just yesterday, one of Trump’s top immigration agents said that more raids and brutality are on the horizon while immigrant youth continue to lose their protections each day. The urgency for policymakers to deliver a solution is building by the hour and advocates are continuing to demand that Congress step up to protect immigrant youth by January 19th.
Advocates continue to call on Republicans to stop their blockade on progress and call on Democrats to use their leverage on spending bills to enact the Dream Act which would protect millions of young immigrants who came to this country under the age of 18 without hurting the immigrant parents who sacrificed it all to provide them with a better life.
The Dream Act is legislation which accomplishes those goals — it is bipartisan, supported by the vast majority of the American people and does not create a new group of vulnerable, second class people.
Greisa Martinez Rosas, Policy Director for United We Dream and potential beneficiary of the Dream Act, said:
“We are fighting for a breakthrough and Congress must vote for a bill that protects immigrant youth without harming our parents & community by January 19.
“Our lives and the lives of our parents and families are at stake here. United We Dream members are putting our bodies on the line to fight for our right to exist and thrive in this country. We know that some want nothing more than to blow up a deal with proposals to criminalize and hurt our parents and low income workers but we will fight for what is right. We and our country need Congress to pass a bill of love and that bill of love is called the Dream Act.”
SEIU International President Mary Kay Henry said:
“Signs Congress is working towards a solution are encouraging; we urge our elected officials to protect immigrant families now, and pass legislation that keeps families together once and for all. The American people overwhelmingly support Dreamers, and Republican leaders in Congress and the White House must respect the views of the people who sent them to Washington. Giving Dreamers and their families the peace of mind to plan for their future, continue to go school and work, and contribute to the economy is good for all working people. Our message to elected officials: act now to protect immigrant families or we will remember in November.”
Kica Matos, Director of Immigrant Rights and Racial Justice for the Center for Community Change, and spokesperson for the Fair Immigration Reform Movement (FIRM) said:
“Our communities cannot accept any immigration ‘deal’ that would create a permanent group of disenfranchised people of color. We can and must do better than that. Such a bait and switch would fall short of what the American people want, including the majority of Republicans: a Dream Act free of poison pills like major changes to the legal immigration system.
“The year is 2018, not 1718. Our movement is fired up. We will make our voices heard today, tomorrow, and in November at the ballot box. For elected officials who think they’re safe in their seats: think again.”
United We Dream is the largest immigrant youth-led organization in the nation, a powerful network made up of over 400,000 members and 48 affiliate organizations across 26 states. UWD’s vision is to build a multi-racial, multi-ethnic movement of young people who organize and advocate at the local and national levels for the dignity and justice of immigrants and communities of color in the United States.