MEDIA ADVISORY: June 9, 2022
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Dreamers, National Business and Education Leaders, Immigrant Advocates to Host Press Conference Marking DACA’s 10th Anniversary
Leaders to Call on Congress to Legislate Pathway to Citizenship for Undocumented Youth
WASHINGTON – This Wednesday, June 15, #WithDACA – a coalition comprised of the American Business Immigration Coalition (ABIC), Coalition for Humane Immigrant Rights (CHIRLA), TheDream.US, FWD.us, National Immigration Law Center (NILC), Pre-Health Dreamers, Presidents’ Alliance on Higher Education and Immigration and United We Dream – will host a press conference in the Senate Swamp on Capitol Hill to mark the 10th Anniversary of Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA) and to call on Congress to pass a comprehensive Dream legislation immediately.
The press conference comes just weeks before the Fifth Circuit Court of Appeals is slated to hear oral arguments in a case that will determine DACA’s future viability, and is part of a larger fly-in of Dreamers, educators and business leaders who will be meeting with their Members of Congress.
WHAT: #WithDACA 10th Anniversary Press Conference
Rebecca Shi, Executive Director, American Business Immigration Coalition (emcee)
Zuleyma Barajas, DACA holder, member, Coalition for Humane Immigrant Rights (CHIRLA)
Kim Wilcox, Chancellor, University of California-Riverside, member, Presidents’ Alliance on Higher Education and Immigration
U.S. Senator Alex Padilla (D-CA)
Greisa Martinez, Executive Director, United We Dream
U.S. Senator Dick Durbin (D-IL)
Raj Echambadi, President, Illinois Institute of Technology, member, Presidents’ Alliance on Higher Education and Immigration
Irma Becerra, President, Marymount University, member, Presidents’ Alliance on Higher Education and Immigration
U.S. Rep. Maria Salazar (R-FL)
Diana Pliego, Dreamer & NILC Policy Associate
U.S. Rep. Raul Ruiz (D-CA), Congressional Hispanic Caucus Chairman
Indira Islas, Dreamer & TheDream.US alumnus
WHEN: Wednesday, June 15, 2022, 9:00 a.m. ET
WHERE: U.S. Capitol Senate Swamp, located on the Capitol Lawn in front of the Senate Gallery
VISUAL: U.S. Capitol will serve as visual for this event
DACA’s success has unleashed the economic potential of almost 800,000 people, allowing them to contribute to our economy, start families, buy homes, access healthcare, build businesses, and bring their talents to the industry sectors where they’re most needed. Three-quarters of DACA participants in the workforce – 343,000 people – are essential workers. 34,000 provide healthcare services and 11,000 work tirelessly keeping our hospital and clinic facilities up and running. As our nation faces a teacher shortage, there are 20,000 educators who are DACA recipients working with kids in classrooms across the country. About 100,000 DACA recipients work in the nation’s food supply chain, roles that are more important than they have ever been.
But, for too long, DACA participants have been vulnerable to government indecision, sowing anxiety, instability and legal limbo in their lives. And DACA’s strict timeframes omit thousands of individuals who need it. More than 427,000 undocumented students are currently enrolled in postsecondary institutions, and of these, less than half (181,000) are DACA-eligible. Similarly every year, nearly 100,000 undocumented students graduated U.S. high schools, but only one-quarter are DACA-eligible.
DACA has been a transformative program for both its recipients and the country, demonstrating why expanding opportunities for immigrants is good for all of America – but it’s not enough. Now is the time to build on the successes of DACA and bring forward a bi-partisan legislation that provides a path to citizenship to all undocumented Dreamers, those with or without DACA. The future of our country depends on it.
American Business Immigration Coalition (ABIC) is a bipartisan coalition of over 1,200+ CEOs, business owners, and trade associations across 16 mostly red and purple states. ABIC Action promotes common sense immigration reform that advances economic competitiveness, provides companies with both the high-skilled and low-skilled talent they need, and allows the integration of immigrants into our economy as consumers, workers, entrepreneurs, and citizens.
Coalition for Humane Immigrant Rights (CHIRLA) was founded in 1986 to advance the human and civil rights of immigrants and refugees. CHIRLA is the largest immigrant rights organization in California and a strong proponent of humane, sensible, and regional policies that respect the value and dignity of migrants and immigrants. CHIRLA relies on the love and vision of our community to organize and build power among people, institutions, and organizations to change public opinion and craft progressive policies that promote human, civil and labor rights for everyone.
FWD.us is a bipartisan political organization that believes America’s families, communities, and economy thrive when more individuals are able to achieve their full potential. For too long, our broken immigration and criminal justice systems have locked too many people out of the American dream. Founded by leaders in the technology and business communities, we seek to grow and galvanize political support to break through partisan gridlock and achieve meaningful reforms. Together, we can move America forward.
National Immigration Law Center (NILC) Founded in 1979, the National Immigration Law Center is the leading advocacy organization in the United States exclusively dedicated to defending and advancing the rights and opportunities of low-income immigrants and their loved ones. NILC’s mission is grounded in the belief that everyone living in the U.S. — regardless of race, gender/gender identity, immigration, and economic status — should have equal access to justice, resources, and educational and economic opportunities that enable them to achieve their full human potential.
Pre-Health Dreamers provides resources to undocumented students pursuing in health-related programs, including nursing, medicine, dentistry, physical therapy, and research. Over 2,700 students have received professional training, and 240 students have received individualized career guidance. Over 300 of our participants have graduated or are in their first year as medical doctors or health professionals. As a result of our partnership and discussions with the AAMC, more than fifty medical schools now accept DACA recipients. We have established partnerships with NILC, the President’s Alliance, and other organizations, which aid in guiding our advocacy efforts by analyzing policies that assist undocumented students pursuing health-related careers and comparing them to health-related program guidelines.
The nonpartisan, nonprofit Presidents’ Alliance on Higher Education and Immigration brings college and university presidents and chancellors together on the immigration issues that impact higher education, our students, campuses, communities and nation. We work to advance just, forward-looking immigration policies and practices at the federal, state, and campus levels that are consistent with our heritage as a nation of immigrants and the academic values of equity and openness. The Alliance is composed of over 500 presidents and chancellors of public and private colleges and universities, enrolling over five million students in 43 states, D.C., and Puerto Rico.
TheDream.US is the nation’s largest college and career success program for immigrant youth, having provided more than 8,750 college scholarships to undocumented students attending 70+ partner colleges in 19 states and Washington, DC.
United We Dream is the largest immigrant youth-led organization in the nation, a powerful network made up of over 800,000 members, over 100 local groups and a reach of over 5 million per month. 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.