AILA: House Bills Give Hope to Dreamers, but DACA Still in Danger
WASHINGTON, D.C. - The American Immigration Lawyers Association (AILA) praised the introductions of the Dream Act of 2017, led by Representatives Lucille Roybal-Allard (CA-40) and Ileana Ros-Lehtinen (FL-27), and the American Hope Act, led by Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi (CA-12), Minority Whip Steny Hoyer (MD-5), Representative Luis Gutierrez (IL-4) and members of the Congressional Hispanic Caucus. Just as the Dream Act introduced last week in the Senate, these bills would provide young people, who were brought to this country as children and grew up in the United States, the chance to apply for lawful permanent residence, and eventually apply for citizenship.
Annaluisa Padilla, AILA President, welcomed the measures, saying, "These bills make clear that there is bipartisan support for Dreamers that literally reaches across our nation with Representatives Roybal-Allard of California and Ros-Lehtinen of Florida leading the charge. Many leaders in Congress recognize that protecting Dreamers is good for America. At a time when the Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA) has come under threat, action by Congress is vitally important to ensure these young men and women are protected from being ripped from their communities. Dreamers are emblematic of the future of our great nation and these aspiring Americans deserve an opportunity to secure a permanent home in our country."
AILA Director of Government Relations Greg Chen noted, "For more than a decade, the American public has supported granting legal status to Dreamers, viewing these young people as a benefit to our society and a key factor in our shared prosperity. Every day, Dreamers and their families, even those granted temporary protection under DACA, live in fear of deportation. These bills would lift the cloud hanging over them and also offer the hope for a lasting future in the country they already call home. Congress has the chance to move forward on these measures in both chambers, and AILA calls on Senators and Representatives to act without delay. In the meantime, President Trump must protect DACA recipients by announcing once, and for all, that he will keep the DACA program in place until a bill that protects Dreamers becomes law."
The American Immigration Lawyers Association is the national association of immigration lawyers established to promote justice, advocate for fair and reasonable immigration law and policy, advance the quality of immigration and nationality law and practice, and enhance the professional development of its members.