by Félix Pérez/image by Dan Davis
Amid all the talk recently by the media that immigration reform is dead, in step President Obama and congressional leaders from both parties to give renewed hope to the millions of students and families who want to come out of the shadows and contribute without fear to the country they love.
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“Let’s do it now, let’s not delay, let’s get this done in a bipartisan fashion,” said President Obama this morning in prepared remarks delivered at the White House. “[L]et’s see if we can get this done this year.”
DREAMer students and their families, jubilant when the Senate overwhelmingly passed bipartisan immigration reform in June, have grown increasingly frustrated with the lack of movement in the House, where Republican leaders have refused to allow a vote or introduce a bill.
But recently there have been signs that the House may be cracking the door open.
House Speaker John Boehner, R-Ohio, asked this week if immigration reform was still possible in the five weeks of legislative business remaining this year, said:
I still think immigration reform is an important subject that needs to be addressed. And I’m hopeful.
Early this month, House Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi introduced comprehensive immigration reform legislation modeled after the Senate bill. “The time is now to make comprehensive immigration reform the law of the land,” said Pelosi.
Educators who support DREAMer students and their families continue to push for reform because they see firsthand the negative consequences our broken immigration system has on students, their families and entire communities. These educators, along with Republican and Democratic leaders of the faith community and the business community, agree the nation cannot afford to stand by as 60,000 DREAMers graduate each year from U.S. high schools and tens of thousands of families are forcibly separated.
Stacey Hervey, a high school teacher in Denver, captured the hopes of educators and students alike this way, “Reform is needed. Students want to give back to their communities.”