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CHIRLA, UWD, NextGen America, Center for Community Change, MoveOn.org & Indivisible Discuss Their Fight for a Clean Dream Act & Dangers Faced by Activists in Light of Yesterday’s Attack

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A recording of today’s event is available here

On a press call today, representatives from the Coalition for Humane Immigrant Rights of Los Angeles, the Center for Community Change, NextGen America, United We Dream, MoveOn.org, and Indivisible provided insight into the diverse field activities happening throughout the country in support of a clean Dream Act. A recording of today’s call is available here.

For more information on Dream Act events taking place around the country, click here.

Yesterday, peaceful immigration and TPS demonstrators were violently attacked as an individual deliberately drove a car into the crowd, injuring many.

Angelica Salas, Executive Director at CHIRLA, said:

Since President Trump and Attorney General Sessions decided to strip away protection from deportation and the ability to pursue careers and futures for over 800,000 immigrant youth, we have tried to host meetings with the Republican California Members and DACA-recipients, but our requests have been ignored time and time again. It is in this context that yesterday, after a peaceful sit-in organized by HERE, SEIU USWW, Carecen, and CHIRLA to urge the CA GOP to meet with DACA-recipients and protect Temporary Protected Status recipients and their families, an individual decided to ram his car into our activists. It was horrible. The blame lies with the California GOP who refused to meet with our community. We will not be intimidated, and we will not give up. We must replace DACA with permanent protection: The Dream Act. It is time for Congress to do its job and to move a vote before the end of the year and ensure immigrant families are protected.

Angel Padilla, Policy Director at Indivisible, said:

Dreamers are fighting for their lives, and that is no exaggeration. This country has become a dangerous place for all immigrant under President Trump and Stephen Miller. Just recently we saw a 10-year-old in Texas detained after her surgery. Trump’s elimination of DACA was a choice that is already harming communities and families across the country. Congress has the power to fix the mess Trump has made. Our 6,000 Indivisible groups are demanding action from Congress by the end of the year. Indivisible groups will be making sure that their elected officials get the message that we need this problem fixed now. There is no excuse for inaction.

Raul Preciado, California Youth Organizing Director at NextGen America, said:

Young voters are engaged and mobilizing around passing a clean Dream Act because they understand that this fight is not about politics — it is about people. This fight is about their family members, friends, and neighbors. Last week, our organizers and their student volunteers delivered over ten thousand petition signatures to Republican California members of Congress, and we will continue to hold them accountable until we pass a clean Dream Act.

Adrian Reyna, Director of Membership and Technology Strategies at United We Dream and DACA-recipient, said:

Every day, more and more young people are losing their protection from deportation and every day the need for Congress to pass a clean Dream Act this year becomes more urgent. Undocumented youth will be in the faces of members of Congress in their home districts and in Washington DC and on November 9th we will lead Operation Dream Act Now with walk outs from schools and rally in DC to call on leaders to deliver a clean Dream Act.

Corinne Ball, Platform Campaign Director at MoveOn, said:

When Trump ended the successful DACA program, he threw the lives of 800,000 into chaos and uncertainty. Immigrant youth are in the worst kind of limbo—they could be ripped away from their families, their homes, and their communities. In response, we’re seeing a new wave of grassroots integrity, led by immigrant activists, standing with immigrant youth demanding that Congress pass a clean Dream Act now. Since the inauguration, MoveOn members have pulled out all the stops to fight back against Trump. We defeated him on healthcare and the Muslim ban, three times, and we are ready to defeat his hateful policies once again. This is the priority in the progressive movement, and we are united to demand action from legislative leaders. Immigrant youth should not spend another day in limbo.

Isaias Guerrero, ‎Immigration Organizer at Center for Community Change Action, said:

This month alone, the FIRM network has organized and participated in over 60 rallies, press conferences, direct actions and phone banks targeting elected officials. Wisconsin FIRM member Voces de la Frontera has been attempting to meet with Speaker Paul Ryan for years. After being ignored by the Speaker at his church, district and DC offices, DACAmented youth from Wisconsin joined with allies from Make the Road New York to try and force a face-to-face meeting with the Speaker in Manhattan. Once again, the Speaker hid behind a wall of excuses, playing the game of white supremacists in the administration. In the South, the Florida Immigration Coalition, has been tireless in their effort to meet with Senator Marco Rubio, and build pressure on Congressmen and women to sign the discharge petition that would force a vote on a clean Dream Act. The immigration field is not slowing down. Nearly 800,000 lives are hanging in the balance and we will not stop fighting until a clean Dream Act is passed.

Kica Matos, Director of Immigrant Rights & Racial Justice at Center for Community Change, said:

The immigrant rights movement is mobilizing all across the country for a clean Dream Act. The lives of nearly one million young people hang in the balance because of Trump and his band of white supremacists. DACAmented youth – and all immigrants – deserve the opportunity to live their lives with dignity and in the pursuit of happiness. Our message is clear: we need a clean Dream Act and we need it now.

Ada Briceño, Co-President of UNITE HERE, Local 11, said:

Yesterday, UNITE HERE, SEIU and other community organizations boldly took a stand to challenge the mass deportation agenda that Trump has set forth and call on our nation’s leaders to preserve Temporary Protected Status (TPS) for 320,000 hardworking men and women that have come to this country, seeking refuge from national disasters and war. Even in the face of that brutal attack we saw yesterday against peaceful protesters, we will not be scared into staying quiet.