WASHINGTON, DC – FWD.us President Todd Schulte issued the following statement today in response to the introduction of the Secure and Succeed Act:
“Providing a pathway for Dreamers to earn citizenship is vital, but the Secure and Succeed Act takes the wrong approach. This legislation cuts American legal immigration levels by nearly 50% over the long term — the biggest cuts in nearly a century — and is designed to substantially increase deportations at a time when arrests of undocumented individuals without a prior criminal record nearly tripled last year.
Congress has the opportunity to make substantial increases in border security funding, and should take the opportunity to do so without making large-scale and harmful cuts to legal immigration levels. Dreamers are teachers, nurses, and engineers, and they are doing their jobs every day in the face of this urgent crisis. It is time for Congress to step up and do theirs. 86% of Americans are behind them; inaction is not an option.
FWD.us opposes the Secure and Succeed Act.”
Students from CUNY Dreamers join FWD.us staff following the inaugural Ride for Dreamers at SoulCycle.
NEW YORK, NY – FWD.us hosted the inaugural Ride for Dreamers at SoulCycle East 83rd to raise awareness and inspire action about the urgent need for Congress to pass a bipartisan solution to protect Dreamers. With SoulCycle’s signature inspirational music and messages of encouragement and positivity, Ride for Dreamers participants celebrated New York’s vibrant immigrant heritage and re-energized for the fight ahead.
Participants in the sold-out SoulCycle class were welcomed by New York City Council Member Keith Powers and New York City Council Member Carlos Menchaca who spoke of their immense pride in the important contributions of Dreamers to our city, and our country at large.
President of CUNY Dreamers Isaac Montiel inspired his fellow riders by sharing his personal story as a DACA recipient, and encouraged everyone to push for action. He reiterated that the time is now to pass a permanent legislative solution for Dreamers, like him who face an expiration date with the end of the DACA program on March 5th looms ahead.
New York State Governor Andrew M. Cuomo was represented by Jenifer Rajkumar, who delivered remarks about the state’s commitment to immigrants, and reminded participants about available resources for immigrant communities.
Celebrated fashion designer Isa Tapia and IMG Models Samantha Gradoville and Mariah Strongin joined today’s Ride for Dreamers, which took place during New York Fashion Week. The fashion industry continues to demonstrate unwavering support for Dreamers and the broader immigrant community.
Additional participants in today’s ride also included business leaders from companies including Tech: NYC, MM.LaFleur, and Knotel; more than 10 Dreamers; as well as advocates, community members, and Dreamer Allies.
The Ride for Dreamers takes place at a critical time: next week the United States Senate has the opportunity to produce a bipartisan bill that increases border security and protects Dreamers. No bill will be perfect, but inaction in the face of this crisis is unacceptable; Congress has just one more shot to get this done and pass a solution to protect Dreamers. There are approximately 42,000 DACA recipients in New York. DACA recipients the the broader Dreamer population are students, parents, teachers, and nurses – doing their jobs every day. It is time for Congress to step up and do theirs. If Congress does not pass legislation by March 5th, New York can anticipate a $2.6 billion annual loss in GDP.
Quotes about yesterday’s Ride for Dreamers at SoulCycle:
FWD.us President Todd Schulte: “We’re thankful for those who participated in yesterday’s Ride for Dreamers, which brought together business leaders, civic, and government leaders, the fashion industry, community activists and Dreamers to again make clear that the time is now for Congress to protect Dreamers. New York City is home to more than 40,000 Dreamers. Heading into this week’s debate in the Senate, we hope every Senator knows that the time for them to act is pass legislation to provide a permanent legislative solution is now.”
New York City Council Member Keith Power: “I’m happy to be here in my district for an important cause. Today, we’re getting together to ensure that anyone who wants to live in New York City and the United States has the opportunity to do so, and to make sure that New York City continues standing strong for its progressive values.”
New York City Council Member Carlos Menchaca: “Protecting our DREAMers and their families safeguards the integrity of our American values. DREAMers fuel our economy; they are our neighbors, our friends, our family members. Next week, U.S. Congress must take action and deliver a clean DREAM Act. I want to thank the FWD.us and Council Member Keith Powers for organizing this event and for standing up for our DREAMers,” said Council Member Menchaca.
Fashion designer Isa Tapia: “Fashion designer Isa Tapia said, “I love how New Yorkers come together to support what makes us the greatest city in the world. This is the city where dreams are made, the city of dreamers! I am so proud to have joined forces with FWD.us, at SoulCycle, and the fashion community. We have to keep fighting the good fights!”
President of CUNY Dreamers Isaac Montiel: “If Congress continues to ignore the urgency to this problem, 800,000 DACA recipients, including myself will be forced to live in limbo. This is Congress’ opportunity to show leadership! Stand on the right side of history. Do what is right and pass a Dream Act NOW! Show us that you can lead with character and integrity.”
Office of Governor Andrew M. Cuomo’s Representative Jenifer Rajkumar: “Governor Andrew M. Cuomo stands with Dreamers and New York State’s immigrant communities. He has repeatedly said ‘If there is a move to deport immigrants, I say then start with me.’ Concerned immigrants can call our New Americans Hotline at 1-800-566-7636 and receive assistance in over 200 languages. New York State is here for immigrant families every step of the way.