Washington, D.C. – In commemoration of the 9-year anniversary of the Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA) program today, immigrant youth and members of United We Dream rallied near the White House to uplift our communities’ calls that DACA is not enough and that President Biden and Democrats in Congress can and must deliver on a pathway to citizenship for millions now. Partners from the We Are Home Coalition and Connecticut Students for a Dream, Dream Action Oklahoma, Poder of Idaho, ACLU of Idaho, Kansas Missouri Dream Alliance, Kentucky Dream Coalition, Washington Sin Fronteras, Arizona Dream Act Coalition, and New Mexico Dream Team also joined.
Adding to the momentum to pass citizenship, as of today, over 44,000 immigrant youth and allies have signed United We Dream’s petition demanding President Biden and Democrats in Congress add citizenship for immigrant youth, TPS holders, farmworkers, and other essential workers to the American Jobs package.
Karla Mercado Dorado, First-time DACA applicant and member of United We Dream, said:
“When Trump took office, I was overwhelmed with fear. His administration made it a goal to target and hurt immigrant communities as much as possible, attacking DACA and even those without DACA, like me, at every opportunity. In December 2020, I was finally able to apply for DACA for the first time. Today’s anniversary is a reminder of the power of immigrant youth and our allies who fought to win and protect the program against numerous Republican-led attacks. But our fight is far from over. An ongoing lawsuit in Texas is yet another vindictive and cruel attempt by Republicans to end DACA and put our communities on a path to deportation.
While I’m hopeful my DACA application will be approved, I know that DACA is still not enough. It will always leave people like me vulnerable to Republicans whose only intention is to detain and deport us. At the same time, DACA’s temporary protections only apply to a fraction of our communities. While I may be approved for DACA, millions in our communities, including our loved ones and friends, are not eligible for the program. Everyone in our communities deserves permanent protections! President Biden and Democrats in Congress have the power to get this done. By adding citizenship to the American Jobs Package and passing this through reconciliation, Democrats can and must go it alone to deliver permanent protection for me, my family, and millions of other families now!”