ICYMI: From CEOs to Faith Leaders, Support Grows for Passing a Permanent Solution for Dreamers

Posted by FWD.us Press on 10/20/2017

Elected officials, university presidents and leaders in the business and faith communities continued to call on Congress this week to pass a bipartisan solution that would allow Dreamers to continue living, working and studying in the United States without disruption. A permanent legislative solution is the only path forward to prevent the devastating consequences of watching our nation rip nearly 800,000 hardworking young people out of the workforce and our communities, using our taxpayer dollars to arrest and deport people.
Wanted to make sure you’d seen these new developments this week in the fight to protect Dreamers under imminent threat of deportation:
The Center for the Study of Immigrant Integration released an interactive map of the economic impact of GDP loss anticipated in each Congressional District if all DACA workers from the district lose their work permits and are removed from the American workforce.
Nebraska Republicans at the local and federal levels voiced their support for passing a legislative solution to protect Dreamers:
  • Republican Congressman Don Bacon (NE-2), a co-sponsor of the RAC Act, said he would continue to stand by Dreamers, saying “I think it’s important for Dreamers to know that I will stand for them and that I will not allow any DACA child who works hard, and is doing the best she or he can, be deported.” Congressman Bacon later told the Nebraska Radio Network:
  • “I think we’ve got to fight to do the right thing. I’ve known about 80 of these DACA kids and some of them will break your heart. They’ve been hiding their whole life and worried about having a broken tail light. I met a girl the other day who wants to go to New York University to be a professional dancer. Another guy already has a clothing company. He is 17 years old and already has his own clothing line. They are very sharp young folks who only know this country.”
  • The bipartisan Omaha City Council voted 5-0 on Tuesday, Oct. 17, to urge Congress to pass legislation to protect Dreamers. Omaha Mayor Jean Stothert, a Republican, is expected to sign the resolution, which notes that “Dreamers have become part of the fabric of our society, and it is within the power of Congress to act in an effort to implement protections for Dreamers.”
On Wednesday, Oct. 18, Democratic Leader Pelosi joined Congresswoman Lucille Roybal-Allard, Congresswoman Judy Chu, Congressman Jimmy Gomez, the Los Angeles Unified School District, business and faith leaders and Dreamers for a roundtable discussion on the Dream Act, saying:
“All we need is a vote.  All we need is vote.  And do you know why?  Because the DREAMers have conducted this crusade for America in such a dignified way and that’s why I think, as I said the President supports the DREAMers because the American people support the DREAMers and Republicans hear that in their districts.”
Congressman Tim Walz (D-MN) on Tuesday, Oct. 17, met with local Dreamers to learn about the real life impacts of immigration policy on their lives and on the city of Rochester, saying:
Let me be clear: these children are Americans. This is their home. Deporting Dreamers, who contribute much to our society, harms our economy and our moral fabric. Congress must act. I call on Speaker Ryan and my Republican colleagues, some of whom have already expressed their support for DACA, to act immediately. This moment requires them to put their country and human decency over politics, and I stand ready to work with them on this issue, as well as comprehensive immigration reform.”
Apple CEO Tim Cook, Leon Panetta, Madeleine Albright, Univision CEO Randy Falco, Chicago Mayor Rahm Emanuel, Harvard President Drew Faust and the governors of North Carolina and Colorado are among the founders of the Dream Coalition, which launched Monday, Oct. 16, to urge Congress to protect immigrants who came here as children:
“Our nation’s greatness will only be enhanced by our embrace of Dreamers. We believe their full incorporation into America’s fabric is critical to our future success. Dreamers serve in our military, learn in our schools, work and innovate in our businesses, pay taxes, and make our economy and communities stronger. Deporting Dreamers would be profoundly self-defeating and trigger enormous and unnecessary economic and social consequences.”
Dreamers In The News:

ICYMI: Momentum for Dreamers builds as DACA renewal deadline passes

Posted by FWD.us Press on 10/13/2017

Support for giving Dreamers the chance to stay in the United States continues to build momentum among lawmakers in the House and the Senate. Members of Congress from both sides of the aisle are continuing to voice support for protecting America’s Dreamers and allowing them to contribute to the only country they know as home:

New polling from the Associated Press found that most Americans don’t want Dreamers to be deported from the country where they grew up:

“What you see is growing support within the voters overall in giving Dreamers a path to citizenship,” said Todd Schulte, president of FWD.us, an immigration advocacy group founded by Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg. “Giving Dreamers the ability to earn citizenship is the most popular bipartisan, not just immigration, issue, the single most united issue in the country.”

On Thursday, Oct. 12, Rep. Roger Marshall (R-KS) and Rep. Pramila Jayapal (D-WA) co-authored an op-ed in The Hill, highlighting the need to work across the aisle to fix problems with our broken immigration system, and to pass a bipartisan legislative solution to protect America’s Dreamers:

“In the end, in our respective roles as a physician from rural Kansas, and a national immigrant rights advocate, we saw the same thing: immigrants are a vital part of America’s past and our future. Without the help of these folks, our economies and communities would not make it.”

On Thursday, Oct. 12, Congressman Beto O’Rourke reaffirmed that a legislative fix for Dreamers is an urgent issue for Texas, saying: “

[Dreamers] study in school, lead productive and successful careers, serve in our military and are a critical piece of the fabric of our communities. The DREAM Act has bipartisan, bicameral support and if presented on the floor of the House today, it would pass.”

On Wednesday, Oct. 11, House Democratic Leader Nancy Pelosi, Congresswoman Pramila Jayapal and Congresswoman Michelle Lujan Grisham joined faith and business leaders – including FWD.us President Todd Schulte – to call for support on the bipartisan Dream Act. According to Leader Pelosi:

“Protecting our DREAMers and respecting immigrant families unites us and unites the three B’s: business, badges — our law enforcement friends – and bibles – our religious friends. And every Republican president for the past four decades has recognized the constant re-invigoration of America. Look at Ronald Reagan. Even after Congress acted, he said, “You haven’t gone far enough. We’re going to have family fairness,” and he protected more people, he and George Herbert Walker Bush, a higher percentage of people than even Barack Obama with his initiatives. This is Ronald Reagan and George Herbert Walker Bush.”

On Monday, Oct. 9 at Fortune’s Most Powerful Women Summit, Ivanka Trump addressed Dreamers, saying that “this is a very complicated issue that needs a long-term congressional fix.”

“I am of the opinion – and the president has stated – that we have to figure out a good solution that protects these innocent people, many of whom were brought to the country as children,” she said. “There has to be a long-term fix; it can’t be bandaged over on a presidential level by another executive order.”

Last week, almost 150 Dreamers representing 25 states flew to Washington, DC, to push for passage of the bipartisan Dream Act. Over the span of two days, Dreamers participated in more than 100 meetings with Members of Congress and their staff, and joined Senators Dick Durbin and Lindsey Graham for a joint press conference:
“There are only two paths forward: either Congress can act now and pass urgent legislation like the Dream Act, or our nation will be responsible for forcing 800,000 out of their jobs, subjecting them to immediate deportation, and using the very information they gave to the government in good faith to find, arrest and deport them,” said FWD.us President Todd Schulte.

Dreamers in the News:

USA Today: 20,000 DACA teachers at risk — and your kids could feel the fallout, too
Washington Post (Editorial): Trump’s cruel sabotage of the ‘dreamers’
Splinter News: ‘When You’re Put Up Against A Wall, You’re Going To Speak Out’: In The Eye of the Media Storm with DACA Recipients
Post Independent: Glenwood’s Marissa Molina lobbies in DC for Dream Act

Nearly 150 Dreamers meet with Members of Congress to push for Passage of the Dream Act Amid DACA Renewal Deadline

Posted by FWD.us Press on 10/05/2017

WASHINGTON, DC – This week, nearly 150 Dreamers from more than 25 states across the country flew to Washington, DC, to meet with Members of Congress to share their stories and to highlight the need for urgent passage of the Dream Act. This crucial bill would implement a permanent legislative solution for DACA recipients, including an earned pathway to citizenship for hardworking young individuals who came here as children.


Over the span of two days, Dreamers participated in more than 100 meetings with Members of Congress and their staff. They also joined a press conference with Senators Dick Durbin and Lindsey Graham to highlight the October 5th deadline for eligible Dreamers to renew DACA and the urgent need for the passage of the Dream Act. FWD.us President Todd Schulte issued the following statement about today’s DACA deadline and the Dreamer meetings with Members of Congress:


“Today marks the final deadline for DACA renewals – the final day that anyone will be able to apply for a work permit and deportation protection under this program. It is a difficult day for hundreds of thousands of Dreamers and tens of millions of their friends, families, and colleagues. These DACA recipients – who, on average, came to this country at the age of 6 and are now 26 years old – face an uncertain future, and live with the fear of being ripped out of their jobs and community.”


“There are only two paths forward: either Congress can act now and pass urgent legislation like the Dream Act, or our nation will be responsible for forcing 800,000 out of their jobs, subjecting them to immediate deportation, and using the very information they gave to the government in good faith to find, arrest and deport them.”

“That is why it is so important for Members of Congress to hear directly from Dreamers themselves. We are thankful to fight alongside the nearly 150 Dreamers who came to D.C. this week to meet directly with their representatives to encourage them to pass the Dream Act. We had over 100 meetings, primarily with Republican Senators, Members of Congress and their staff.”


“Congress must hear the voices of these incredible individuals and urgently take action to ensure they can continue to live, work, and contribute to the only country most have ever known. The time of reckoning has arrived; every individual must ask what they will do to fight for a Dream Act, and every Member of Congress owes the American people a vote.”

Photos courtesy of FWD.us
The nearly 150 Dreamers in attendance came from a diverse range of backgrounds, including individuals working as teachers and engineers, working in medical and scientific fields, and studying in undergraduate or advanced degree programs. These individuals came to the U.S. as young children and have actively contributed to their local communities within educational institutes, houses of faith and employment opportunities. Several have children and families of their own who are U.S. citizens. This nation is their home in every way except their legal documentation.


On September 5, the Trump Administration rescinded the DACA program, jeopardizing 800,000 DACA recipients who could face deportation if Congress does not pass a permanent legislative solution.

Senators Durbin & Graham Join More Than 100 Dreamers to Push for Dream Act

Posted by FWD.us Press on 10/04/2017

WASHINGTON, DC – Senator Dick Durbin and Senator Lindsey Graham today joined more than 100 Dreamers to call on their colleagues to join them in supporting the Dream Act, which would provide a permanent legislative solution for DACA recipients, providing protection from deportation and work authorization for these hardworking young people.

More than 100 Dreamers from 25 states across the country have been in Washington, DC, this week to call on their members of Congress to pass the Dream Act, which would allow them to continue working, studying, and paying taxes in the only country they know as home. The fly-in has allowed dozens of members of Congress and their staffs to hear the diverse and inspiring stories of Dreamers first-hand.

“The clock is ticking for the hundreds of thousands of talented young people who have grown up in America and know no other country. Listen to their stories—but for their immigration status, any one of these young people could be my children or yours. I’ll do everything in my power to protect these Dreamers and give them the chance to become American citizens so they can contribute to a brighter future for all Americans. I call on my colleagues to help,” said Senator Dick Durbin.

“These young people have lived in America since they were children and built their lives here,” said Senator Lindsey Graham. “There is support across the country for allowing Dreamers – who have records of achievement – to stay, work, and reach their full potential. Our legislation would allow these young people – who grew up in the United States – to contribute more fully to the country they love. They have a powerful story to tell and this may be an area where both parties can come together.”

“I was 9 years old when I came to the United States with my family, fleeing political instability and to pursue the American Dream. As an automotive engineer in R&D, I love that everyday I am at the forefront of American innovation creating new technology for the cars we build,” said Nathali Bertran, a Dreamer living and working in Columbus, Ohio. “Losing DACA is not just about me and my career: so many people have invested in me to make my dreams come true, and it’s important to me that I can stay in my country and give back, but the only way for that to happen is for Congress to pass the Dream Act without delay.”

“DACA has allowed me to pursue my dreams of working at a hospital, which has allowed me to pay for the pre-med classes I am currently taking at Oklahoma State University,” said Dreamer Jesus Perez of Tulsa, Oklahoma. “I love helping my patients feel comfortable and get the care they need in very scary moments in their lives. When my DACA protections end, I would lose my job and won’t be able to pay for class, putting my dreams and the care of patients at my hospital on hold. If the Dream Act passes, I’ll be able to continue my studies, apply for medical school, and become the cardiothoracic surgeon I know I am meant to be.”

“We’re very grateful to Senators Durbin and Graham for their leadership on the Dream Act, and for their commitment to the fight ahead on this clear bipartisan solution,” said Maria Praeli, a Dreamer and FWD.us policy associate. “We need Senate and House leadership to bring this to a vote immediately, and we know we can do this if we keep pushing together.”

The 100+ Dreamers participating include those from a diverse range of backgrounds, such as individuals working as teachers and engineers, working in medical and scientific fields, and studying in undergraduate or advanced degree programs. A number of Dreamers come from mixed-status families, and some are mothers and fathers to U.S. citizen children. All have been here since a young age and are active in their communities, such as in local houses of worship, as mentors, and on sports teams.

After the Trump Administration rescinded DACA on September 5, nearly 700,000 DACA recipients could face deportation if Congress does not pass a permanent legislative solution.