DREAM Act

July 2, 2012

In response to calls of hundreds of thousands to pass the DREAM Act for undocumented citizens, on June 15, 2012, President Obama issued an Executive Order that effectively allows an estimated 800,000-1,000,000 undocumented youth to move out of the shadows of society. In this change, the Department of Homeland Security can no longer deport immigrants who have come to the United States before the age of 16, have lived here for five years, are in school, are high school graduates or military veterans, are under the age of thirty, and have no criminal record. Undocumented immigrants can now obtain necessary documents to work here legally, including driver’s licenses. President Obama stated, “They are Americans in their heart, in their minds, in every single way but one: on paper.”

While this move has given relief to many young undocumented students, the DREAM Act is still on the table in Congress. Even though it is a good step for many immigrants and their families, the Executive Order is no substitute for the DREAM Act. The DREAM Act offers a pathway to citizenship in the United States, something which the executive order does not include. For more resources on the DREAM Act visit the United States Conference of Catholic Bishops Justice for Immigrants campaign here:

http://www.justiceforimmigrants.org/parish-kit.shtml

To take action and contact your member of congress, visit our DREAM Act Action Alert here: http://columban.org/12139/columban-center-for-advocacy-and-outreach/support-the-dream-act/