A project of the Center for Community Change

immigration

Thousands of Immigrants, Friends and Families Rally on Capitol Hill to Demand the DREAM Act Now

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE

December 6, 2017

Thousands of Immigrants, Friends and Families Rally on Capitol Hill to Demand the DREAM Act Now

Congressman Luis Gutierrez and Congresswoman Judy Chu Risk Arrest During Civil Disobedience with Activists

(Washington, D.C.)—Thousands of immigrants, activists, educators, students, families and friends rallied on Capitol Hill to demand Congress pass the DREAM Act and find a permanent solution for TPS beneficiaries before the year’s end. In an act of escalation, 181 people risked arrest during the largest civil disobedience of the modern immigration rights movement. Congressman Luis Gutierrez (D-Ill) and Congresswoman Judy Chu (D-CA) were among those arrested.

“Our families cannot keep waiting for Congress to act and pass the DREAM Act,” said Fair Immigration Reform Movement (FIRM) spokesperson Kica Matos. “Millions of people’s lives are on the line and more than 120 DACAmented youth lose their status daily. Congress needs to do its job and pass the DREAM Act before leaving for recess. We deserve the opportunity to live our lives with dignity and without fear of being deported.”

Immigrant communities have been confronting a series of attacks and setbacks, particularly the termination of DACA and Temporary Protected Status (TPS) for Haitians, Nicaraguans, and Sudanese people. Tens of thousands of other TPS holders face uncertainty as the renewal deadlines loom. Congress can pass the Dream Act for immigrant youth and a solution for the 300,000 TPS holders who have long made United States their home.

“Today was one of the biggest mobilizations by immigrants and for immigrants in years,” said CASA in Action president Gustavo Torres. “Thousands stood up for their rights to be in this country and our allies showed up as well. The truth is Americans all over the country support Dreamers and those with TPS. Teachers, parish priests, neighbors, sons, everybody wanted to show their support. People recognize that this is a human rights issue during a very dark time in this nation’s history.”

More than 70 buses full of immigrants came to DC, including 30 organized by CASA/CASA in Action. The FIRM participants came from 21 states, including Alabama, Arkansas, California, Colorado, Connecticut, Florida, Illinois, Kansas, Maryland, Michigan, Nebraska, Nevada, New Jersey, New York, North Carolina, Oregon Pennsylvania, Texas, Virginia, Washington and Wisconsin.

The Rally to Defend Our Immigrant Families was organized by FIRM, CASA/Casa in Action, SEIU and United We Dream.

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Senators Introduce Bill to Protect 320,000 Temporary Protected Status (TPS) Holders

For Immediate Release: November 16, 2017

Senators Introduce Bill to Protect 320,000 Temporary Protected Status (TPS) Holders

(WASHINGTON)— Kica Matos, spokesperson for the Fair Immigration Reform Movement (FIRM), issued the statement below after Senator Ben Cardin (D-MD) and Senator Chris Van Hollen (D-MD) introduced a new bill to protect TPS holders:

“The bill introduced today by Senator Ben Cardin (D-MD) and Senator Chris Van Hollen (D-MD) provides a permanent legislative solution with a path to citizenship for the more than 320,000 TPS holders who are facing uncertainty with upcoming TPS designation renewals, as well as those whose TPS status has been unjustly terminated. More importantly, this bill will keep families together in the communities they have built for years.

This legislation recognizes the urgency of this moment as hundreds of thousands of families’ lives hang in the balance. The Trump administration has already terminated TPS for Nicaragua and Sudan.

This bill compliments legislation that was introduced earlier this month in the House. It’s time for Congress to take the next step and pass bills to protect TPS holders. For years, and in some instances decades, these folks have been contributing to their communities. Congress needs to act now to pass a permanent solution and stop Trump’s ethnic cleansing agenda.”

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Trump Administration Keeps Dreamers Hostage, Pushes White Supremacy Agenda Further

For Immediate Release: October 9, 2017

Trump Administration Keeps Dreamers Hostage, Pushes White Supremacy Agenda Further

Communities Across America to Trump: No Deal!

(Washington)—Kica Matos, spokesperson for the Fair Immigration Reform Movement (FIRM), issued the following statement after the White House released its immigration principles:

“The White House’s ‘immigration principles’ are nothing short of White Supremacists’ list of demands to ethnically cleanse the country and intimidate black and brown communities. The lives of 800,000 young people—young Americans—are hanging in the balance as Trump plays games with members of congress. This is not a reality show; this is real life.

The White Supremacist list of demands includes money for the border wall and hiring 10,000 more ICE agents and seeks to restrict options and due process for young children seeking asylum from dangerous conditions in their own countries. The White House wants to establish a merit-based immigration system to ‘protect American workers.’ However, the reality is that immigrants do not take jobs from Americans. Wealthy CEOs, like Trump and his children, who move jobs overseas, are the real job killers. Immigrants help grow and revitalize our economy and our communities across the country.

We cannot sit back as White Supremacists in the White House continue pushing their divisive agenda forward. Love trumps hate every single time. Make America White Again is not going to succeed because we are not going to stop building the resistance.”

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