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Mixed-Status Immigrant Families, Community Leaders Sit Down In Dayton, Ohio For “DAPA Dinner”

 

Mixed-status immigrant families, community leaders, and a member of Sen. Sherrod Brown’s office sat down for a “DAPA Dinner” in Dayton, Ohio yesterday to discuss how immigration policies can affect and change the lives of children, families, and communities in the state.

There are approximately 95,000 undocumented immigrants in the state of Ohio. At least 25,000 of these undocumented immigrants would be eligible for work permits and relief from deportation under DAPA, but the program has been blocked by the Supreme Court.

At yesterday’s DAPA Dinner, some of the mixed-status families and community members affected by adverse immigration policies included Stephany, a college student and US citizen who has two parents eligible for DAPA; Travis, a US citizen currently separated from his wife Magui; Carmelina, a housekeeper, single mom and community leader with Welcome Dayton; and Bernarda, also a community leader in Dayton.

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“I think there if there’s no [immigration] reform, the family is broken,” Bernarda said. “It destroys children, even if they are US citizens because without parents, there’s no income and they can’t get ahead.”

Earlier this summer, former Ohio Governor and US Senate candidate Ted Strickland also broke bread with community leaders and immigrant families as part of the nationwide DAPA Dinners campaign.

While Governor Strickland accepted the request, his Republican opponent, Senator Rob Portman, declined the invitation.