Thursday, November 18, 2010

Youth Unite to Push for the DREAM Act Before the End of Session

Leaders from AJUA, CIRC, and CASE Along with Educators and Other Supporters Rally for the DREAM Act.

Glenwood Springs, CO – Today at 4:30 pm at Sayre Park in Glenwood Springs, immigrant youth and supporters staged a rally to push for the DREAM Act and to address the need for instate tuition for immigrant students.

“ This event is meant to show that those of us fighting for the DREAM Act in the Roaring Fork Valley are ready to work hard to make it a reality,” said Edgar Niebla, a leader with the Association de Jovenes Unidos en Accion (AJUA). “ Senator Reid and Representative Pelosi promised a vote on the bill, and it looks like it will happen in this session. We just want to make sure that they know that we stand with them and that we are ready to do whatever it takes to get DREAM passed.”

The event featured a human billboard, with youth lining up along the park walks with signs supporting the DREAM Act and in-state tuition for DREAMers. Speakers at the event included educators and community leaders along with youth telling their stories.

Moises, A DREAM Activist who has lived in Basalt for 12 years, since the age of 7, stated “I am here speaking on behalf of other students that have graduated and have had to put their dreams on hold because of the broken immigration system and because of the fact that their is no path to citizenship for undocumented students at this point. I am one of those student that have had to put their dreams on hold. When I graduated from high school, I wanted to go to college to become a mechanic, but due to my status I can’t get a social security number and or driver license, both of which things are required to go in to an auto tech course.”

Alex Alvarado-co-student body president of the Roaring Fork High School and DREAMer since he was brought to the country at the age of 2, stated “The Dream act would allow me a path to citizenship while the Colorado Asset bill will allow me to pay the normal tuition cost as any other person that lives in Colorado; instead of being seen as someone who has been living here 15 years and all of a sudden these years count for nothing.”

“ The students present here today are valuable contributors to the Roaring Fork Valley community, and hearing their stories along with the testimonies of the teachers and administrators that support them just solidifies that fact,” noted Brendan Greene, Rocky Mountain Region Organizer with CIRC, “ It just makes me understand that we have to do all that we can to show our support to our legislators, so that they can do the right thing and pass DREAM as a down payment on comprehensive immigration reform.”

This week President Obama came out in support of passing the DREAM Act in the “lame duck” session, and Representative Pelosi has said that the vote is tentatively scheduled for November 29th in the House. Actions, phone-banks, and mail-in campaigns will be taking place nationwide in this final legislative push before the new Congress is seated.