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Immigration Reform Movement Prepares for DAPA and DACA+ Implementation

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As we quickly approach the Supreme Court’s decision on United States v. Texas, the immigration reform movement has been working hard to get ready to implement DAPA and DACA expansion.  America’s Voice Education Fund (AVEF) chronicled some of this work in a blog series called “Ready for DAPA,” featuring members of the Fair Immigration Reform Movement (FIRM) among others.  Read the entire blog series here.

AVEF has also been operating a web site, DAPAquestions.org, where individuals can submit specific requests for information and receive answers from a qualified immigration lawyer. In Wisconsin, Voces de la Fronteraraised community awareness through FIRM’s “Faces of DAPA and DACA” photo exhibit and their 5,000-person march. In Ohio, The Lorain Ohio Immigrant Rights Association (LOIRA) conducted multiple vaccination clinics and brought the Mexican Mobile Consulate to Lorain, so DAPA and DACA-eligible people could obtain the birth certificates, immunization records, and other documents they need to apply.  In Maryland, CASA held a “Do you Qualify for DAPA/DACA+?” information session for the public and set up a cell phone tree to quickly notify members when a decision is announced.

The Coalition for Humane Immigrant Rights of Los Angeles (CHIRLA) has reached over 10,000 people in the past four months through partnerships with public schools, consulates, and churches. The Committee for Immigration Reform Implementation (CIRI) has informative materials prepared to send out as soon as the Supreme Court decision is made to its vast network to advise other groups how to begin implementation. Voz Hispana Cambio Comunitario has held twenty-five community forums so far, and has planned six additional forums for after the decision, in churches and schools throughout Oregon, bringing accurate information on DAPA and DACA to eligible Oregonians.

FIRM members Voces de la Frontera, CHIRLA, CASA, CIRI, and Voz Hispana continue to train “DAPA navigators,” knowledgeable volunteers who will be equipped to help DAPA applicants with the complexities of the program, both before and after Decision Day.

The immigrant rights movement is also planning awareness actions to take place on or after Decision Day.  These include press conferences, vigils, rallies, community forums, and other types of events. Decision Day activities from the FIRM network and others are already scheduled in Arizona, California, Colorado, Connecticut, District of Columbia, Florida, Illinois, Kansas, Maryland, Massachusetts, Michigan, Nevada, New Mexico, New York, North Carolina, Oregon, Pennsylvania, Tennessee, Texas, Utah, Virginia, Washington, and Wisconsin, with others being added. A list of these events can be found at the Fight for Families web site.

According to Kica Matos, Director of Immigrant Rights and Racial Justice, Center for Community Change/FIRM: “Our families expect that the Supreme Court is going to rule in favor of President Obama’s executive actions and are planning actions in over 30 cities to celebrate their hard-fought victory. Immigrant families across the country have already waited too long and are ready to finally have the opportunity to apply for immigration documents and remain in their adopted country while they work to become full-fledged citizens.”

“I left my country so that my children could have a much better future than I had. I have three children that have DACA, another one who is a citizen, and a daughter who just became eligible for DACA,” stated Carolina Moran, a DAPA-eligible immigrant from Cayuga Park, CA. “DAPA would change my family’s life because we would be able to stay together. We would finally be able to have a better quality of life without having to worry about being separated through deportation.”

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