Miami – With few days left in the lame-duck Congress, it’s time for the U.S. House and Senate to pass the DREAM Act and allow talented high-school graduates to fully contribute to the United States. The bill not only will allow deserving youth to earn legal status, but also do much more to help the nation as a whole.
DREAM Act youth represent an untapped wealth of U.S. talent at a time of increasingly competitive global markets. They are future entrepreneurs, engineers, academics, doctors, rocket scientists and military generals. The DREAM Act would stop the colossal brain drain that occurs when ambitious young people are deported or blocked from higher education and achieving their full potential.
They are dreamers like Gaby Pacheco, a FIAC client and one of the four Trail of Dreams youth who walked 1,500 miles to Washington, D.C., earlier this year. A longtime student activist and achiever, she has continued to advocate for constructive immigration reforms. As a Nov. 30 New York Times editorial noted, Gaby once “hugged Joe Arpaio, a sheriff in Arizona, momentarily disarming his anti-immigrant virulence.”
Gaby has earned three degrees from Miami Dade College, yet she is blocked from her dream job, which is to work with autistic children. She is exactly the kind of contributor this country needs. In this is the season of goodwill and generosity, it’s shameful that Congress has yet to provide immigration relief for youth like Gaby.
“It time for Congress to step up to the plate,” said Cheryl Little, FIAC’s executive director. “This is a no-brainer. The United States can’t afford to waste all this talent. We urge Congress to do what is best for deserving dreamers and our nation: Pass the DREAM Act.”