Friday, June 15, 2012

Relief Provided to Immigrant Students

Washington, D.C. June 15, 2012- A new policy initiative will aid immigrant students who want to live and work in the United States without fear of immediate deportation. The Deferred Action Process being implemented by the U.S. Department of Homeland Security will allow students under the age of 30, who were brought to this country as minors and have been here for more than 5 years, to have the opportunity to apply for a Deferred Action Process and work authorization that could allow them to stay in the United States.

In order to qualify for consideration under the Deferred Action Process, per the Department of Homeland Security website, "individuals who demonstrate that they meet the following criteria will be eligible for an exercise of discretion, specifically deferred action, on a case by case basis: 
- Came to the United States under the age of sixteen;
- Have continuously resided in the United States for a least five years preceding the date of this memorandum and are present in the United States on the date of this memorandum;
- Are currently in school, have graduated from high school, have obtained a general education development certificate, or are honorably discharged veterans of the Coast Guard or Armed Forces of the United States;
- Have not been convicted of a felony offense, a significant misdemeanor offense, multiple misdemeanor offenses, or otherwise pose a threat to national security or public safety;
- Are not above the age of thirty."

National Association of Hispanic Publications President Zeke Montes said, "This is a significant step toward decriminalizing students who have done nothing more than study, work, and become productive members of our society. We hope this brings a tide of acceptance and understanding that immigrants of all nationalities deserve the opportunity to realize the American Dream." He continues, "And we urge President Obama and Congress to take up these issues in earnest, pass the DREAM Act, and finally push for fair and just Comprehensive Immigration Reform."

The President Has Spoken
This is huge! The President just announced that he's going to stop deporting us DREAMers. We've heard promises like this before. Now, we need to make this promise real. Tell President Obama and the world that you will be watching to make sure to not one more DREAMer gets deported. members have been pushing for action from the President like this for a long time. It was two years ago, with and the Trail of DREAMs that I walked 1,500 miles from Miami to Washington D.C. to demand action on the DREAM Act. On the trail, I met hundreds of inspiring undocumented youth, like a young woman in North Carolina who wanted to go to medical school, or the hundreds of high school kids who walked with us in Orlando. All joined the DREAM movement then, and like myself, all haven't stopped fighting for a moment.

Since then, the pressure from DREAMers has been too much for President Obama to bear without doing something. Through the Right to Dream campaign, through actions in Obama campaign offices, through the cover of TIME magazine, we've demanded action from the President, and we've finally built enough power, in part through the growing Latino vote, to get it.

It would be easy to stop here and celebrate the President's words, but we're 1.2 million deportations past words at this point. We have to send the country a message that while we appreciate the President's announcement today, we won't stop fighting for change until we see it.

That's why I need you to tell the President, Congress and other leaders in this nation that you stand with me, and millions of undocumented people who have become Americans, even if we don't have papers that recognize us as such. If you tell them that you stand with us, you'll be sending a message, and that you'll continue to fight against every deportation. Tell them, now, and tell all your friends to do the same.

We got here because we fought, and we didn't stop fighting. This is a huge moment that we can mark by telling the President that we stand with DREAMers, and that we are watching.

Thanks and ¡adelante!
Gaby, Felipe, Juan, Erika, Jesus, Carlos from the Trail of DREAMs and the rest of the Team
                                                                                                          ATLANTA 2010

Pressure for Congress to Pass the DREAM Act
Every year, there are 65,000 undocumented youth that graduate from high school without the same opportunities given to their friends and classmates. Legislators have been playing politics with the lives of Dreamers for the past 11 years, but we are ready to show them that we’re still here and need the DREAM Act to pass now.

"Every year I hear about these graduations and I am so excited I finally get to be a part of one. It helps knowing that even here, in Georgia, we aren't alone" says Dulce, one of the students going to Washington D.C. The annual DREAM Act graduation it’s only  days away.

Maria Marroquin
The National Immigrant Youth Alliance

Rubio's Selective Memory

On August 31, 1962, a sixty-three-year-old Cuban citizen named Pedro Víctor García boarded a Pan American Airways flight to Miami without a valid visa. After he landed, immigration police detained him. They could have deported Victor back to Havana immediately, but, for reasons that are unclear, they allowed him to stay, and to plead his case. Eventually, he became a legal resident of the United States.

Half a century later, on June 15th, President Barack Obama announced that he had given his approval for the Department of Homeland Security to use its “prosecutorial discretion” to stop deporting certain young, law-abiding undocumented immigrants, a decision greeted with joy and relief by many of the hundreds of thousands who will benefit.

Senator Marco Rubio, of Florida, a Tea Party favorite and an up-and-coming star of the Republican Party—and Pedro Víctor’s grandson—denounced Obama’s plan. Rubio, who has often spoken out forcefully against illegal immigration, criticized the President for overstepping his authority and playing politics “by edict, by fiat . . . to coincide with the November election.”

Last week, Rubio was promoting his new memoir, “An American Son.” In the book, he praises his grandfather as an “insistent individualist, who made his own way in the world.” Rubio doesn’t discuss Pedro Víctor’s interlude as an illegal immigrant, however, or the police discretion that aided him; that history came to light only because of the reporting of Manuel Roig-Franzia, of the Washington Post, whose book “The Rise of Marco Rubio” also came out this month. (Rubio said that he did not know of his grandfather’s circumstances until Roig-Franzia uncovered them.)

Steve Coll


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