AILA Welcomes Senator Reid's Commitment to the DREAM Act; Urges All Senators to Support the Bill

Cite as "AILA InfoNet Doc. No. 10091601 (posted Sep. 16, 2010)"

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE:
Thursday, September 16, 2010

CONTACTS:
George Tzamaras or Jenny Werwa
202-507-7649, 202-507-7628
gtzamaras@aila.org, jwerwa@aila.org

WASHINGTON, DC – The American Immigration Lawyers Association (AILA) applauds this week’s announcement that Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid (D-NV) will bring up the bi-partisan DREAM Act as an amendment to the Defense Reauthorization bill. AILA believes this is a welcome and positive step forward toward real immigration reform and urges all Senators to vote in support of the bill.

“The DREAM Act would give deserving kids a chance to earn legal status in the U.S.,” said AILA President David Leopold. “The young people who will be helped by the DREAM Act are among our nation’s finest students. They have worked hard in school and wish to pursue higher education or serve in the US Armed Forces. Their status as undocumented immigrants is the only thing standing in the way of their pursuit of success and opportunity in America.”

First introduced in the Senate during the 108th Congress, the DREAM Act has consistently won support from both parties, but has not successfully passed through either chamber. AILA Executive Director, Crystal Williams said, “The DREAM Act is bipartisan legislation that enables high-achieving young people who have grown up here and who are American in all but their paperwork to continue on their paths of success without fear of deportation to a country they’ve never known. Its passage would benefit all American communities.”

Arizona AILA attorney Mo Goldman said, “Our legal community works with thousands of students whose only immigration relief would come with passage of DREAM.” Goldman became an active proponent of the DREAM Act after representing several students who could benefit from its relief. He continued, “We stand united in support of our clients who have worked very hard to succeed here, but who are confronted with a huge immigration obstacle that holds them in the shadows of our communities instead of out front as young leaders.”

Leopold added, “It is time to pass this important stepping stone to comprehensive immigration reform and we commend Senator Reid for bringing this forward for a vote. We are eager to work with the Majority Leader and other members of both parties to pass this vital legislation and to end one of the more counterproductive parts of our immigration system.”

On Friday, September 24, AILA will host an event at its fall conference in San Antonio, Texas to celebrate DREAM students and the DREAM Act. The event is scheduled from 2:00 – 3:00pm in the San Antonio Terrace at the JW Marriott San Antonio Hill Country Resort and Spa.

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