San Diego Elected Officials Sign Letter Urging Passage of a Clean Dream Act

In a display of bipartisan support, two dozen local and state elected officials signed onto a letter that urges Congress to protect Border Dreamers without further militarizing our communities.  

That letter is posted below.


Dear Members of Congress:

As local and state elected officials in the San Diego border region, we write to express the urgent need for Congress to pass a clean, bipartisan DREAM Act without using their parents and loved ones as bargaining chips for wasteful and unnecessary border militarization.

The President’s decision to end the Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA) Program on September 5th has grave consequences for our region.  Nearly half of all Dreamers live in states along the US Southern Border (CA, AZ, NM, TX), and there are 38,000 Dreamers in San Diego County alone.  These individuals are a vital part of the diverse, vibrant community we have here in San Diego County — they are our neighbors, classmates, coworkers, members of our faith communities, business owners, and more.  

DACA recipients and their families contribute significantly to the cultural and economic well-being of our region.  In, the five congressional districts that are in San Diego County, DACA recipients currently contribute $877,400,000 in Gross Domestic Product (GDP).  Terminating DACA means that those individuals will either no longer be in the workforce, or they won’t be able to contribute economically at the same level as they did when they had a work permit.

The DACA program gave young people a chance to more fully participate in our society, provide more for their families economically, and protected families from being separated by cruel deportations.  

Our proximity to the border means that we live in a highly militarized area with large presence of immigration officials, where individuals are already at a greater risk of coming into contact with abusive, corrupt and unaccountable agents.  Now, with the termination of DACA, these young people are at a severe risk of deportation and family separation.  

Passing the DREAM Act will certainly help eliminate this risk, but it cannot be done in exchange for increasing border militarization. That would mean exposing the parents and family members of DACA recipients to the Administration’s already massive deportation machine in the region. This is why we need to pass a clean, bipartisan DREAM Act — adding on any provision that would harm the family members of DACA recipients goes against our values of treating all our residents with dignity and respect.

There is no doubt in our minds that our region will suffer tremendously from the unfair termination of the DACA program.  We urge you to pass a clean, bipartisan DREAM Act now.  

Sincerely,

Patricia Aguilar, Councilmember, City of Chula Vista

David Alvarez, Councilmember, City of San Diego

David Arambula,Councilmember, City of Lemon Grove

Richard Barrera, Board President, San Diego Unified School District

Catherine Blakespear, Mayor, City of Encinitas

Barbara Bry, Councilmember, City of San Diego

Myrtle Cole, Council President, City of San Diego

Todd Gloria, Assemblymember, California Assembly District 78

Georgette Gómez, Councilmember, City of San Diego

Lorena Gonzalez Fletcher, Assemblymember, California Assembly District 80

Stephen Houlahan, Councilmember, City of Santee

Tasha Boerner Horvath, Councilmember, City of Encinitas 

Ben Hueso, Senator, California Senate District 40

Tony Kranz, Deputy Mayor, City of Encinitas

Albert Mendivil, Vice Mayor, City of National City

Jennifer Mendoza, Councilmember, City of Lemon Grove

Steve Padilla, Councilmember, City of National City

Colin Parent, Councilmember, City of La Mesa

Mona Rios, Councilmember, City of National City

Mary Casillas Salas, Mayor, City of Chula Vista

Nicholas Segura, Board Member, Sweetwater Union High School District

Alejandra Sotelo-Solis, Councilmember, City of National City

Cipriano Vargas, Trustee, Vista Unified School District

Chris Ward, Councilmember, City of San Diego

Mark West, Councilmember, City of Imperial Beach

Dwight Worden, Deputy Mayor, City of Del Mar

David Zito, Councilmember, City of Solana Beach

 


1 Migration Policy Institute. (2016). [Interactive Map on DACA-Eligible Populations by State and County, 2016]. Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA) Data Tools. Retrieved from: https://www.migrationpolicy.org/programs/data-hub/deferred-action-childhood-arrivals-daca-profiles

2  USC Dornsife Center for the Study of Immigrant Integration. (2017). Interactive Map: Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA) Populations and their Economic Contributions by U.S. Congressional District.  Retrieved from: http://dornsife.usc.edu/csii/daca-map/

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *