Congress Kicks Can Down The Road While Dreamers Remain At Risk

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(Long Island Wins archives)

Our nation’s leaders have failed to stand up and fight, kicking the can down the road once more as Dreamers continue to lose their legal status with each passing day, after they gave in yesterday to Trump’s pressure to continue to fund the federal government.

The government will now be temporarily funded through February 8, with lawmakers vaguely reassuring that the solution to the immigration impasse will be found within these three weeks.

But, immigrants and their advocates are sick and tired of political games and self-created crises that use our communities as bargaining chips. It is critical that congressional leaders push for the Dream Act to protect the millions of immigrants who tirelessly contribute to the American way of life and ask for so little in return.

Anti-immigrant politicians and talking heads will say that we have until March 5—the so-called official end of Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA)—to come up with a solution to the vacuum left by the cancellation of the program. However, thousands of Dreamers have already suffered the loss of their protections, after many were unable to renew their applications, leaving them in legal limbo.

Each day, an estimated 122 Dreamers lose their status, with more than 16,000 who have already lost their DACA protections.

Immigrants and advocates will stand firm and continue to rise up in united opposition to those attacking our families, neighbors, co-workers, and dear friends. With or without our officials, they will press forward to keep our Dreamers here and to renew their hope in the American way of life, despite Trump and company driving a wrecking ball through our Statue of Liberty.

There is still a chance to make things right, and there’s another three weeks to get it done. But, our leaders must stand firm and must refuse to give any more ground to racism, xenophobia, and anti-immigrant sentiment.

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Jano Tantongco is the online editor of Long Island Wins. He's previously worked in community journalism as a staff reporter for The Long Islander and The Queens Courier. He aims to pursue truth through a combination of rational inquiry and intuition. He also enjoys bossa nova, road trips and zen philosophy.

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