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Board Advocates for Undocumented Immigrants Who Came to U.S. as Children Resolution Supports Passage of Federal Bill That Would Lead to Citizenship (3-19-19)

Contact: Mindy Shim 213-241-6180
                                               

 

Board Advocates for Undocumented Immigrants Who Came to U.S. as Children
Resolution Supports Passage of Federal Bill That Would Lead to Citizenship

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LOS ANGELES (March 19, 2019) — Demonstrating the steadfast commitment of the Los Angeles Unified School District to provide an excellent education to every student as an inalienable civil right, the School Board today reaffirmed its support for the federal Dream and Promise Act. Introduced by Congresswoman Lucille Roybal-Allard, the Act provides permanent legal programs and a path to citizenship for those brought to the United States as undocumented children.

graphic of 'We Are One' campaign “Los Angeles Unified is committed to helping all children regardless of where they were born, or the circumstances of their arrival in this country,” said Superintendent Austin Beutner.

Board President Mónica García, the sponsor of the resolution, said, “I have and will always continue to stand with our immigrant students, families and communities. I proudly support the House Resolution to reinstate the DREAM Act and provide our students an opportunity to contribute to our society as an active and productive citizen. This action represents hope, progress and a better tomorrow for both Los Angeles and our nation.”  

This District has a long history of supporting immigration reform and undocumented youth, including the original Dream Act in 2007, the Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals in 2013 and We Are One: Standing with Immigrant Families, the ongoing initiative that began in 2017 (https://achieve.lausd.net/weareone). 

Board Vice President Nick Melvoin, a co-sponsor, added, "Every child deserves an opportunity to dream without boundaries. And as we continue to fight this Administration’s senseless attacks on our immigrant communities, we will also continue to ensure the safety and well-being of the students, families and employees in our schools.”

Board Member Kelly Gonez also a co-sponsor said, “I am proud to co-sponsor this resolution that embraces all our students, families and staff and recognizes the urgent need to support our undocumented and mixed-status families. Every child deserves the opportunity to achieve their dreams, regardless of where they were born. It is past time for the federal government to act.”

“I am proud to co-sponsor ‘Demanding Action on DREAMs Deferred: Finding a Permanent Resolution for Undocumented Youth and Temporary Protected Status Beneficiaries,’” said Board Member Scott M. Schmerelson.”  He added, “Now more than ever, we need a comprehensive immigration reform that protects Dreamers, as well as Temporary Protected Status and Deferred Enforced Departments beneficiaries and provides a pathway to citizenship. The Los Angeles Unified School District will continue its commitment to protecting our immigrant students and families and ensure that every school remains a safe haven for all.”

Board Member Dr. George J. McKenna III said, “I underscore the District’s commitment to protect and support every Los Angeles Unified student’s right to a quality education, regardless of their status.”

Board Member Dr. Richard Vladovic said, “We shouldn't expect children who have only grown up in the United States to be sent back to a place they do not know due to the unjust politics of the day. These kids by culture are Americans, and just as importantly, they are our students, and we should support measures that will allow them to stay and flourish in the country they now call home.”  

The resolution also received support from community partners Coalition for Humane Immigrant Rights of Los Angeles (CHIRLA) and the California Dream Network.

"When the promise of a life in the U.S. without fear was made by President Obama, millions of young immigrants believed it was possible to come out of the shadows and finally contribute fully to our communities,” said Melody Klingenfuss, CHIRLA statewide organizer and leader of the California Dream Network. “When President Trump broke that promise, the pain and disappointment were real, especially for those who were too young or too old to apply for the protection offered by DACA. The introduction of the Dream and Promise Act lets the light shine on a better future for young immigrants, their families and their communities."

"This nation has seen major breakthroughs in social justice and protections for vulnerable communities,” said Angelica Salas, CHIRLA Executive Director. “When DACA was first offered, nearly a million young immigrants applied, but 500,000 others could not apply because they were too young or just a bit too old to do so. Their dreams did not stop because they did not have DACA. Now that a new door of opportunity has opened in Congress with the introduction of the Dream and Promise Act, we may see just how positive the contributions of all immigrants have been and how much more they can contribute to their families, their communities and the nation."

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