NY Immigrant Rights Advocates and NYS Black, Puerto Rican, Hispanic, and Asian Legislative Caucus Mark 20th Anniversary of Original Dream Act With Call for Inclusion of Immigration Legalization in upcoming Budget Reconciliation Process

New York, NY-Today marks the twentieth anniversary of the original introduction of the Development, Relief, and Education for Alien Minors (DREAM) Act, which would provide a road to a green card and then citizenship for immigrants who came to this country as children. The NYIC commemorated the milestone by joining with the New York State Black, Puerto Rican and Asian Legislative caucus on a letter calling for the inclusion of a pathway to citizenship for Dreamers, Dream Act-eligible youth, Temporary Protected Status recipients, and essential workers in the budget reconciliation infrastructure package. 

“The 20th anniversary of the introduction of the first bill to address the needs of Dreamers comes after a far-right extremist judge invalidated the DACA program and threatened millions of young people with family separation and deportation from the only place they have ever called home,” said Murad Awawdeh, Executive Director of the New York Immigration Coalition. “While their futures remain in balance, hundreds of thousands of DACA recipients are serving on the front lines of the COVID-19 pandemic as nurses, doctors, teachers, and more. The way forward is clear; Senate Majority Leader Chuck Schumer must ensure Democrats stand their ground and see that a pathway to citizenship for immigrants brought to the United States as children, TPS recipients, and essential workers remains in the budget reconciliation infrastructure package. It’s the smart thing to do to ensure our continued economic recovery, but it’s also the right thing to do to keep families together.”

“Within this last year alone we have seen how farmworkers, day laborers, and other non-traditional workers have remained on the frontline of our recovery efforts across the nation,” said Assemblymember Michaelle C. Solages, Chair of the Black, Puerto Rican, Hispanic, and Asian Legislative Caucus. “Immigrant families have proven time and time again their commitment to our shared American values. Promises have been made to them and their families, and it is past time Congress fulfilled their obligations to these communities that have made America their home- and provide a pathway for legalization. We cannot continue to allow them to live in a state of perpetual limbo.” 

“For far too long, our families have been promised a path to citizenship,” said Assemblymember Catalina Cruz, Chair of the Taskforce on New Americans. “For far too long, our families have put their lives at risk to support our country, not just during the pandemic but even prior. Now it is time to recognize their contributions and finally give them the path to citizenship they deserve, allowing them to live in dignity in the country they call home. We urge our federal leaders and our President to finally meet their commitment to our immigrant communities and turn their promises of a pathway to citizenship into reality.”