Quigley Meets with Chicago DREAMers to Discuss Urgent Threats to DACA Program
CHICAGO – Today, U.S. Representative Mike Quigley (IL-05) met with five DREAMers from his district to hear their stories and discuss the Trump Administration’s recent threats to eliminate the Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA) program. Those who participated in today’s roundtable discussion and press conference, which was organized by FWD.us, highlighted the important contributions that DREAMers make in our communities; the devastating impact of a potential DACA repeal; and the need to pass the bipartisan DREAM Act, which would create a legalization process for roughly two million hardworking young people who came here as minors.
“Young DREAMers who love our country and want to contribute to its collective success should not fear being torn away from their family and loved ones,” said Rep. Quigley. “It was inspiring to hear from Chicago DACA recipients, who shared their stories and ambitions with me today. Allowing DREAMers to stay in the only home they’ve ever known will help America grow and thrive, and I am committed to protecting their future through my efforts in Congress.”
"Earning DACA has given me the privilege to have what many Americans take for granted: a Social Security Number, which allows me to legally live, work and study in the United States. Because of the DACA program, I was able to further my education and become the first undocumented person to earn a Ph.D. from the University of California at Merced,” said Yuriana Aguilar, physiology and biophysics Instructor, and DACA recipient. “Today, I work closely with many U.S.-born students at Rush Medical College, helping them get one step closer to their academic and professional dreams. My career - and my ability to give back to this country - depends on the protections provided by the DACA program, so I'm asking elected officials to fight for its continuation and pass the DREAM Act so I can contribute here permanently."
"DACA allows countless young undocumented Americans to legally work in the United States,” said Gosia Labno, Communications Fellow at the Energy Policy Institute and DACA recipient. “My parents left their home so that their children could do better. Without DACA, that American dream would be impossible to fulfill."
“Dreamers play a crucial role in our society. These individuals are teachers, students dedicated to earning their degrees, healthcare practitioners, entrepreneurs and engineers,” said Todd Schulte, FWD.us President. “Dreamers have demonstrated their commitment to this country and should not live in fear of having this vital program revoked. The elimination of DACA would have devastating consequences, not only for Illinois, but for the 800,000 recipients living across the country, and for the millions of Americans who live, work and study with them every single day.”
Rep. Quigley is a strong champion of DACA and an ardent supporter of the need to pass comprehensive immigration reform. In February, he invited Zarna Patel, a medical student at Loyola University in Chicago and a DACA recipient, to be his guest at President Trump’s joint address to Congress. In March, Rep. Quigley spoke on the House Floor condemning President Trump for baselessly blaming undocumented immigrants for gun violence in Chicago. Earlier this year, he introduced two pieces of immigration-focused legislation to protect sanctuary cities from having their federal funds withheld and to improve relationships between local law enforcement and immigrants.