Progressive Leaders from the Healthcare, Labor and Women’s Rights Movement Join Immigrant Youth; Call on Congress to Reject Trump Deportation Plan and to Pass Dream Act Now
For Immediate Release
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Washington, D.C. – Today, the National Day of Action for the Dream Act brought together hundreds of progressive allies from the healthcare, labor, and women’s rights movement to join immigrant youth in the fight for the Dream Act.
The group, included speakers and leaders from the Women’s March, the Center for Popular Democracy, Good Jobs Nation, FIRM/Center for Community Change, National Domestic Workers Alliance, Church World Service, Make the Road CT, NJ, NY and PA, CASA, and United We Dream. Participants traveled from all corners of the country.
Ana María Archila, co-executive director of the Center for Popular Democracy said:
“The fight for the Dream Act is a fight for the soul of this nation. It is a profound moral question to the country: who are we? Are we a nation that rips families apart and expelling children from the place they call home? Or are we a nation that affirms that we belong together, and that we will take care of each other.
“Today, women leaders, health care activists, workers, faith leaders and immigrant families are standing united to reject Trump’s White Nationalist vision for country, and call on Congress to solve the crisis that Trump created for when he ended DACA, upending the lives of 800,000 immigrant youth.”
Arlin Tellez Martinez, DACA recipient from North Carolina and UWD leader said:
“I moved to D.C. from my home in North Carolina to dedicate myself fully to get Congress to pass the Dream Act. During today’s action , it was clear just how powerful our movement and our community is when hundreds mobilized to fight alongside immigrant youth. I feel empowered to continue to fight even when Congress fails to protect immigrant young people. We will continue to make our presence seen and heard because our lives are on the line and we cannot keep waiting.”
Monica Camacho, a member of CASA who would qualify for the Dream Act said:
“Punting the DACA decision down the road is a failure of leadership in Congress. We know that the majority of Americans and members of Congress supports a clean DREAM Act NOW, not in a year. For young undocumented people like myself, this is a nightmare. It’s hard to plan for college, for building your family and your career with so much uncertainty. Our lives are on hold so we need a solution right now.”
Sara Mora, an organizer for Make the Road New Jersey and potential Dream Act beneficiary said:
“Just yesterday, faith and community leaders sat in Rep. Lance’s district office in Westfield, New Jersey and refused to leave until Lance publicly committed to a clean Dream Act. Clean means Trump’s current immigration framework is a nonstarter. Clean means fighting back against plans that will gut our family immigration system. While Trump continues to move the goal post, we need leadership to hold the line and vote with Dreamers and our families.”
Linda Sarsour, National Co-Chair of the Women’s March said: “To my undocumented brothers and sisters, I want you to know, you are not alone. You tell us where to be, and we will be there. Today, we are here with you to deliver a message to Republicans and Democrats in Congress: we, people of color, are not bargaining chips. This is not a poker game. These are people’s lives. People who deserve to be here. We’re not asking for favors, we asking for what we deserve!
“My vote in November is for undocumented people. For Black people. For poor people. For marginalized people and we will primary every Democrat that did not have spine to stand against the Trump Administration.”
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.