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El Paso, TX – Texas State Rep. Lina Ortega of El Paso joined immigrant youth from the El Paso area to discuss the urgent need for Congress to pass a clean Dream Act now that President Trump has ended the successful DACA program, one that benefits more than 124,000 young immigrants in Texas.
During the dinner, Rep. Ortega spoke to immigrants who shared their stories and talked about efforts happening across the country, including an upcoming trip to Washington D.C., to ensure that Dreamers remain protected from deportation and can continue contributing to the country they call home.
According to Rep. Ortega:
It was a humbling experience to sit and talk to compassionate, educated young people who are living the American dream and are hoping to continue to do so; fully knowing what lies ahead is unknown. Our community will continue to fight alongside them.
According to Melissa Martinez, Dreamer from Clint, TX:
I am extremely thankful for the opportunity to meet and share our stories with Rep. Ortega. I am also very happy to see all the support from the El Paso community and beyond for Dreamers. Together, we are advocating for the passage of a clean Dream Act without delay.
The DACA program has been an unqualified success, providing new opportunities and futures for nearly 800,000 Dreamers who live, study, and work in America, including 271,000 who are DACA-eligible in Texas. 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 October 17 dinner was part of a nationwide “Dreamer Dinners” campaign. The initiative invites Senators, Congressman, 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.