“These eight days will decide the rest of our lives,” words from Reyna Wences, member of IYJL and a national leader in the DREAM Act movement, at this morning’s press conference. Well, it’s Friday, and we now have 7.
We are working with groups nationally to push our legislators to vote “yes” on the DREAM Act. Together we have been able to make over 10,000 calls, a success that we should celebrate without letting our guard down, because reports we are getting tell us Senators are still getting more calls against the DREAM Act than for it.
So we have a new goal. Nationally, we want to step it up and together make 15,000 calls for the DREAM Act TODAY. We must continue to let our legislators because we still need to secure 60 votes in the senate, from Democrats and Republicans. We currently have about 55, and some are still changing their minds. Please help us make the DREAM Act a reality this year:
Step 3: Read appropriate script, or improvise using the basic talking points as a guide.
Step 4: Rinse, wash, and repeat. Call again, call your friends and make them call. Then tweet about it, or invite your friends on Facebook.
Thank you for all your work and support! Together we can make this happen. You should also check out our report from the press conference with Chicago community groups supporting the DREAM Act. Thanks to Ireri for writing it!
Seven Days to Pass the DREAM Act
Chicago leaders call for community action
(Chicago, IL.).- Today at a press conference Chicago students, parents, and community leaders called on the public to urge their legislators to vote in favor of the DREAM Act. Last Tuesday Senate majority leader Harry Reid (NV-D) announced that he would move the DREAM Act as an amendment to the Department of Defense Authorization bill that will be voted on next week.
“The DREAM act is good for America. It will benefit not just undocumented youth but our country as a whole,” said Reyna Hernandez, Latino Policy Forum. Rogelio, 22, Nuestra Voz, and Cindy Agustin, 21, Immigrant Youth Justice League and Illinois Coalition for Immigrant and Refugee Rights, stressed their participation in voter registration. “I want the chance to prove that my birthplace does not affect my ability to change the world, to fix what i see is wrong,” said Cindy.
“The DREAM Act would allow youth to serve their country either through the military or through higher education,” added Yesenia Sanchez, P.A.S.O West Suburban Action Project, in response to the critics of attaching the DREAM Act to the defense bill.
Reyna Wences, an undocumented youth part of the Immigrant Youth Justice League said “these next eight days will decide the rest of our lives,” referring to the vote the Senate will take on the DREAM Act as soon as next Thursday or Friday. She asked the audience to please call their senators and ask them to support the DREAM Act now.
Rosi Carasco, a mother, also added “This is the time for parents to show their support for our youth and make those calls to our senators.”
In order to urge legislators to pass the DREAM Act, community members should call 1-888-254-5087, and tell their legislators to support DREAM Act as part of the Defense Authorization Bill. “It is time to call on our legislators to pass the DREAM act next week and do what is right: invest in America’s future by allowing millions of undocumented youth give back to this country” concluded Adriana Velazquez, 20, an undocumented student at Northeastern Illinois University also present at the press conference.
Amongst the supporting organizations were the Immigrant Youth Justice League, the Illinois Coalition for Immigrant and Refugee Rights, Chicago Community and Workers Rights, Latino Organization for the Southwest, Nuestra Voz, P.A.S.O. West Suburban Action Project, Latinos Progresando, and the Latino Policy Forum.
The DREAM Act is a piece of proposed federal legislation that would provide a path to citizenship for youth who graduate from US high schools, show good moral character, arrived to the US before the age of 16, and complete at least 2 years of college or armed forces.