Law Enforcement Leaders, Veterans Urge Quick Solution for Dreamers
November 10, 2017
WASHINGTON, D.C. — As Americans gather this weekend to honor our nation’s veterans, momentum is building for a legislative solution that addresses Dreamers.
This week, law enforcement leaders, veterans, members of Congress and other leaders participated in a host of events to underscore the importance of Dreamers and other immigrants to our nation’s public safety and national security.
Following an October letter they and 58 other law enforcement leaders signed supporting a bipartisan legislative solution for Dreamers, the chiefs of the Cedar Rapids and Houston police departments penned op-eds emphasizing the need for a legislative solution that allows Dreamers to feel fully integrated in their communities and continue cooperating with law enforcement, ensuring public safety for all.
Meanwhile, military recruits with Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA) and veterans participated in a press call, Hill briefing and congressional office visits in conjunction with the release of a new report, “For Love of Country: New Americans Serving in Our Armed Forces.”
Among other speakers at the briefing, Rep. Jeff Denham (R-California) discussed immigrants’ motivation to serve and the increasing importance of immigrants’ service to our military readiness. “There’s no greater way to show your patriotism to this country than being willing to put your life on the line,” he said.
Advocates from Alaska to Virginia — eight states in all — participated in meetings with Republican congressional offices to stress the urgency of a legislative solution for Dreamers.
“When I was deployed in the Middle East, I served alongside immigrants and their children, and I know first-hand that they put America first,” wrote U.S. Navy Veteran Kabir Sehgal in an op-ed this morning. And, Robert Gates, Secretary of Defense for Presidents George W. Bush and Barack Obama, wrote in the New York Times, “We need legislation that will provide a pathway to citizenship for those immigrants who, among other attributes, are serving or have served in the military, whether they are in America legally or were brought here illegally as children. That kind of policy will help the military recruit new service members and improve readiness.”
“To keep America secure in a dangerous world, immigrants ready and willing to enlist are needed more than ever. And legislation to offer Dreamers that opportunity is well within Congress’ grasp,” wrote Ali Noorani, Executive Director of the National Immigration Forum in a Waco Tribune-Herald op-ed this morning. “On this Veterans Day, let’s also think about the hundreds of thousands of immigrants who have served for the love of their new country.”