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For Immediate Release Contact: Lizette Jenness Olmos
December 8, 2010 (202) 365-4553 mobile
LULAC Calls on Congress to Pass DREAM Act
Good for our Economy, Good for our security, Good for our nation
Washington, D.C. – The League of United Latin American Citizens, today urged members of Congress to vote in support of the Development, Relief and Education for Alien Minors (DREAM) Act (S. 3992), a bill that promotes fundamental fairness in access to higher education for all high school students, regardless of immigration status. On Monday, Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid (D-NV) filed a cloture petition on S. 3992 that could set the cloture vote for as early as today. A House floor vote on the DREAM Act is expected to take place today.
"The DREAM Act is absolutely crucial to ensuring that all young people in the United States, regardless of their immigration status, can achieve their educational and vocational goals," said LULAC National President Margaret Moran. "The students who stand to benefit from this bill are talented, motivated young adults who have gained admission to college, overcoming many obstacles. Providing these students with the opportunity to pursue a better future for themselves and their families is a quintessentially American gesture and would be a tribute to American values of fairness and equal opportunity."
The DREAM Act is common-sense legislation drafted by both Republicans and Democrats that would give students who grew up in the United States a chance to contribute to our country's well-being by serving in the U.S. armed forces or pursuing a higher education. Because it is the right thing to do, the DREAM Act has long enjoyed bipartisan support. It is limited, targeted legislation that will allow only the best and brightest young people to earn their legal status after a rigorous and lengthy process, and applies to those brought to the United States as minors through no fault of their own by their parents. These are young people who know no other home.
The DREAM Act would provide affordable post-secondary education and military service opportunities for undocumented immigrants who came to the U.S. as children, have lived here for at least five years and have graduated from high school. DREAM has the support of President Obama, Secretary of Defense Robert Gates and former Secretary of State Colin Powell.
According to a recent UCLA study, students that would be impacted by the DREAM Act could add between $1.4 to $3.6 trillion in taxable income to our economy over the course of careers, depending on how many ultimately gain legal status. This income is substantially higher than the income they would earn if they were unable to attend and complete a college education. In fact, research indicates that the average college graduate earned nearly 60 percent more than a high-school graduate. We have much to gain from doing right by these young people.
The League of United Latin American Citizens, the largest and oldest Hispanic membership organization in the country, advances the economic condition, educational attainment, political influence, housing, health and civil rights of Hispanic Americans through community-based programs operating through 880 LULAC councils nationwide.
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