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Faith, Law Enforcement Leaders in Key Districts Urge a Solution for Dreamers

WASHINGTON, D.C. — Key members of Congress have a new round of support from their constituents for finding a solution that protects Dreamers.

A discharge petition that would move the House to vote on four immigration bills, including two that provide a permanent solution for Dreamers, is three signatures short of the 218 needed.

The petition, filed May 9 by Rep. Carlos Curbelo (R-Florida), would bring to the floor a resolution would lead to votes on the bipartisan DREAM Act and USA Act. A third bill, the restrictionist Securing America’s Future Act introduced by Rep. Bob Goodlatte (R-Virginia), would dramatically reduce legal immigration to the U.S. and fails to provide a permanent solution for Dreamers. The fourth bill would be a bill of House Speaker Paul Ryan’s (R-Wisconsin) choice, which could mirror President Trump’s immigration framework.

“Congress has a historic chance to debate and pass legislation that protects Dreamers and helps Americans,” said Ali Noorani, Executive Director of the National Immigration Forum. “Voters want solutions that strengthen legal immigration and boost our economic competitiveness. A solution for Dreamers can’t come at the expense of family immigration that keeps our economy strong.”

Faith and law enforcement leaders in key districts are urging action:

Police Chief William Bones, Boise, Idaho:
“As Americans we stand on the shoulders of those who not just dreamed of a better life for future generations but took risks, sacrificed and challenged inequity to build the foundation of our country. Today’s Dreamers are part of tomorrow’s foundation for the even greater society we can become. We owe an obligation to those who created these United States and I believe our chance to repay this debt lays in helping the Dreamers of today.”

Sheriff Mark Curran, Lake County, Illinois:
“I support Dreamers for many reasons beyond the necessary bridge building between law enforcement and society’s most vulnerable. We need Dreamers to grow our economy and help lead our future. I stand with almost all faith-based leadership in supporting Dreamers.”

Sheriff Ed Gonzalez, Harris County, Texas:
“I am encouraged by the growing bipartisan realization that America is stronger when our immigrant youth are given the chance to contribute to the nation they have embraced as their own. The American people are right to expect our elected representatives to put aside divisive rhetoric. Instead, our genuine servant leaders in Washington must find common ground to show the world that the United States has not turned away from the melting pot ideals that drew all of our forefathers to this great nation. Now is the time for leadership and action.”

Dr. Boyd Hannold, Lead Pastor, Princeton Alliance Church, Princeton, New Jersey:
“As a Christian pastor I pray that we do better. There are multiple bills dealing with Dreamers that are waiting on Congress to debate, two of which are bipartisan. Those two bills offer us an opportunity to be the America we have been in the past and that sets us apart from other countries. I urge all members of the House to sign on to the discharge petition filed on May 9 that these bills may be debated. And I commend my representative, Mr. Leonard Lance, for already doing so.”

Brent Hobbs, Pastor, NewSong Fellowship, Virginia Beach, Virginia:
“Dreamers belong here. They are us. It’s time to pass legislation that reflects how valuable these young people are to our country. They’ve been waiting patiently and it’s imperative that we make this happen.”

Eric Landin, Lead Pastor, Batavia Covenant Church, Batavia, Illinois:
“Our flawed immigration system continues to cause pain and brokenness for millions of families, particularly the families of DACA recipients who are carrying the anxiety and uncertainty of this moment. It’s time to move toward resolution and negotiate a bipartisan and permanent solution for the Dreamers. We in IL-14 know these people — they are our friends, neighbors, and colleagues — so I encourage Rep. Hultgren to sign on to this discharge petition and help us find a shared solution for their sake and for ours.”

Bob Oehrig, Executive Director, Arrive Ministries, Richfield, Minnesota:
“Arrive Ministries and those of us who are working with and supporting refugees and immigrants in Minnesota are grateful for the leadership of Congressman Erik Paulsen (MN-3) for signing on to the discharge petition in support of a permanent solution for Dreamers. Certainly our country can come together to balance security and compassion and find a solution for those who were brought into the country as children.”

Rucker Preston, Executive Director, Texas Christian Community Development Network, Belton, Texas:
“As long as I can remember, the majority leadership in Congress, regardless of which party controls the House, has strongly urged their party colleagues not to sign discharge petitions. The argument made is, ‘Do you really want to turn the floor agenda over to the minority?’ My answer is, ‘Yes, yes, Mr. Speaker, I do if the majority can’t find a legislative way forward for Dreamers.’ They deserve their chance to build their lives, help their families and communities and legally contribute to America’s future.”

Steve Scoffone, Pastor of Global Outreach, Church of the Saviour, Wayne, Pennsylvania:
“I believe that our country needs to find a compassionate and permanent solution in how we treat the people who are now known as Dreamers. I agree that deportation may make sense in some situations, like when adults come here from another country and pose a safety or security threat. On the other hand, I think someone who came here as a child should never be deported. If they grew up in America then this is their home. We should never send them back to a country that is now foreign to them. I am thankful to Rep. Costello for taking a stand and signing on to the discharge petition.”

Norman Viss, Pastor, Trinity Christian Reformed Church, Broomall, Pennsylvania:
“Essential to the values of America and her religious communities are the open arms to strangers, and especially the children, who often suffer through no fault of their own. The Dreamers have, rightly, been given an opportunity to help build this country, and it goes against our values to take this opportunity away from them or leave them in uncertainty. I urge our representatives to pass the bipartisan discharge petition which would require the House to debate and vote on the ‘Queen of the Hill’ resolution on Dreamers (H. Res. 774).”

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