National Immigration Law Center Responds to the Reintroduction of the Dream and Promise Act

March 4, 2021

Juan Gastelum, [email protected], 213-375-3149

National Immigration Law Center Responds to the Reintroduction of the Dream and Promise Act

WASHINGTON — U.S. Reps. Lucille Roybal-Allard (CA-40), Nydia Velázquez (NY-07), and Yvette Clarke (NY-09) on Wednesday reintroduced the Dream and Promise Act, a bill that would provide a pathway to U.S. citizenship to an estimated 3.1 million undocumented immigrants living in the U.S., including immigrant youth and longtime residents with temporary protected status (TPS) or deferred enforced departure (DED).

Marielena Hincapié, executive director of the National Immigration Law Center, issued the following statement:

“The Dream and Promise Act would provide long-overdue relief and stability to millions of people who call the U.S. home and are essential to our communities. We at the National Immigration Law Center welcome its reintroduction and urge Congress to pass it swiftly as a first step toward providing a pathway to citizenship for all 11 million undocumented people living in the U.S.

“The focus on greater inclusion and citizenship for undocumented people stands in stark contrast to the past four years of unrelenting anti-immigrant attacks that put millions of immigrants’ livelihoods, health, and families at risk, including the last administration’s attempts to terminate the Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA) and TPS programs. The Dream and Promise Act is a testament to the strength and political power our communities have built over years of organizing for justice. We are grateful to Reps. Roybal-Allard, Velázquez, and Clarke for their leadership in bringing it forward.

“While there is much to celebrate, we are deeply disappointed that this bill includes harmful provisions that criminalize communities of color and would unfairly exclude many people from relief. We urge Democrats to remove these additional bars that unnecessarily compound racial disparities and anti-Blackness in the criminal legal system. These additional bars go well beyond the already harsh penalties that exist under immigration law and turn a blind eye to the national discourse about transforming policing practices. Democrats must lead courageously in this moment and put forward a fully inclusive approach that moves us closer to racial justice and equity.

“Our communities need relief now as the COVID-19 pandemic continues to impact Black and brown communities, including immigrants, especially hard. These same communities are playing an outsized role in helping us all get through the pandemic. This is the year for Congress to finally act, and to do so courageously.”