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More than 320 Child and Youth Organizations Call for Immediate Passage of Dream Act

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE

Contact: This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it., Director of Communications, Children’s Institute (503) 219-9034

Children’s Institute joins more than 320 child and youth advocacy organizations in a letter to Congress expressing our support for the bipartisan Dream Act of 2017. The bill would provide lawful status and a path to citizenship for hundreds of thousands of immigrant youth and young adults who came to the United States as children, including recipients of the Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA) program.

The letter urges Congress to take immediate action to pass a clean Dream Act following President Trump’s decision to terminate DACA. As a result, more than 800,000 Dreamers who have been able to access work authorization and protection from deportation are once again facing an uncertain future.

As an organization dedicated to the healthy development of young children beginning with prenatal care, Children’s Institute recognizes that rescinding DACA will have immediate, severe consequences for recipients and their families. Recipients will lose their work authorization and once again be at risk for deportation, threatening their safety, economic security, and mental health—as well as that of their families. An estimated 25 percent of DACA recipients are parents to U.S. citizen children. According to a report published in Science on August 31, 2017, about the effects of mothers’ immigration status on children’s mental health in Oregon, “Early childhood exposure to stress and adversity does not only cause poor health and impaired development in the short-term; these issues can also persist into adulthood. Anxiety and psychosocial stress are identified as risk factors for depression, substance abuse, cardiovascular disease, and obesity.” The decision also means that more than 200,000 Dreamers under age 15 who were waiting to age into DACA no longer have the opportunity to apply.

Oregon is home to 11,321 DACA recipients. They are our students, neighbors, coworkers, and community members. The bipartisan Dream Act is common-sense legislation that will provide a permanent solution for these and many more young Dreamers. We join advocates from around the country to urge Congress to immediately pass the Dream Act.

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Children’s Institute is one of Oregon’s leading voices for increased public investment in high-quality early childhood education and healthy development, the most effective strategies to improve long-term outcomes for children. Learn more at childinst.org.


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2017 Child and Youth Advocate Dream Act Letter to Congress

 

 

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