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Miami Beach, FL – Hardline anti-immigrant forces, led by Attorney General Jeff Sessions and Texas Attorney General Ken Paxton, forced the hand of President Trump to kill off the popular and successful Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA) program by March 2018.
On Sunday, Florida Representative David Richardson joined immigrant youth and their parents from Florida to discuss how the repeal of DACA will affect immigrant youth and their families and commit to pushing policies locally and nationally that protect them from deportation.
Florida Representative David Richardson, said:
Sunday night I had dinner with four immigration “DREAMERS” and two Dreamer moms. I wanted to hear their stories and how they will be affected if the program is eliminated. President Obama signed an executive order known as Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA). Under the program, young people have been given renewable two-year protections from deportation and eligibility for work permits. The Trump administration recently announced that the program will end, unless Congress acts. I support the Dreamers because these young immigrants entered the country through no fault of their own — they were just kids who were brought in by their parents or others. If elected to Congress, I want to be “at the table” to find a permanent solution for the dreamers, and move forward with an overall immigration reform package. I intend to listen to all sides of the debate.
Florida Dreamer and FIU Student Monica Lazaro, said:
State Representative David Richardson expressed his support and concerns for the Dreamer community across Florida throughout our dinner. His willingness to find a solution for this dilemma that many young people face, myself included, is a sign of his commitment to the future of the state of Florida. Additionally, he made a vow to be a voice for Dreamers in the state capitol.
Florida Dreamer and FIU Student Lorena Malavet, said:
Having dinner with State Representative David Richardson was a great experience. Sharing our stories and getting his insight on how the state legislature and Congress want to resolve the issue of immigration made me more hopeful for the future. Representative Richardson is committed to helping the immigrant community and help voice the need for the Dream Act and other pro-migrant legislation across the state house and beyond.
The DACA program is an unqualified success, providing new opportunities and futures for nearly 800,000 Dreamers who live, study, and work in America, including 102,000 who are DACA-eligible in Florida. Each DACA recipient has come forward, passed a background check and been granted permission to live and work legally in America. As a result, many have been able to fulfill their dreams of attending and completing college; most are working legally, paying taxes and providing for their families; and all are finding ways to contribute to the country they call home without fear of deportation.
The “Dreamer Dinners” initiative invites Members of Congress and local elected officials to join an immigrant family for a meal to discuss how federal immigration actions impact children, families, and communities. This campaign is a spinoff of the “DAPA Dinners Campaign” – read more about that initiative here.