“The image of America deporting fellow Americans is not something this country or the Republican Party want to see unfolding every night on the national and local news.”
– Rep. Luis Gutierrez (D-Ill.), a top champion of Dreamer relief
Action #1: Call your Rep. and Senators to give them support to do the right thing. Contact information at the bottom of this post.
Sample Script: I am calling from [zip code] to ask Rep. [___] and Senator [___] to continue opposing any DACA bill that includes Trump’s racist “four pillars” immigration plan. Oh, and please don’t confirm Acting ICE Director Thomas Homan.
Action #2: Be part of the resistance network. Print out these flyers in English and Spanish for this DACA renewal clinic and post them in public spaces, and/or send them digitally to friends and organizations who can get them to those in need. Spanish, English
Renewing DACA papers costs each Dreamer $495. This can be a unsurmountable burden to young people who are working in lower-wage jobs or going to school. Please alert us to any scholarship/grant opportunities that we can post here at firstname.lastname@example.org.
In the meantime, here are links for loans for USCIS applications:
Mission Asset Fund : 0% loans available for all types of immigration fees
United We Dream: other loan programs
Selfhelpfcu.org: 0% loans available for DACA, other immigration loans available
Other Free DACA renewal resources: ACLU
Action #3: Repeat “Action #2” actions here with these notices of the next Citizenship Fair. Please encourage anyone who’s had their green card for the required minimum time to take advantage of this great opportunity to have assistance filling out the dreaded N-400 Citizenship form, along with free advice from immigration lawyers on-site. Applicants do not need to be Ventura Country residents. Volunteers who’ve gone through the training lecture, please note the date and join us for this great experience. Link to flyer: 2018 Mar Natz Fair.
Applying for citizenship papers costs $725 dollars. There’s a number on the flyer to apply for fee waivers or refer to the resources for loans listed in Action #2.
So what the heck happened in Immigration last week?
- US District Court Judge Garaufis ruled to extend DACA beyond March 5.
- US 4th Circuit Court of Appeals upheld the block against the third Muslim ban as unconstitutional.
- A group of mayors protested administration threats to withhold funding from sanctuary cities.
- The Attorneys General of twenty states cosigned a letter to strongly oppose adding a citizenship question to the 2020 US Census.
- Recent surveys shows that a majority of Americans support eventual citizenship for children brought to the US.
- The Senate rejected all four immigration proposals aimed at finding a legislative fix for the expiring Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA) program and border security measures. Each proposal needed 60 votes to move forward.
- By a vote 52-47, the Senate rejected a measure from Sens. Chris Coons (D-Del.) and John McCain (R-Ariz.) that proposed a path to citizenship for 1.8 million DACA recipients and included a study to determine what border security measures were needed. It did not include any funding for border security.
- By a vote of 54-45, the Senate also rejected an amendment from Sen. Pat Toomey (R-Pa.) that proposed withholding certain federal grants from sanctuary jurisdictions.
- By a vote of 54-45, the Senate rejected a bipartisan proposal from the Common Sense Coalition, a group of centrist senators, that proposed a path to citizenship for 1.8 million DACA recipients, $25 billion for border security, and limitations on family-based immigration. President Donald Trump threatened to veto the legislation because it did not include all of his immigration reform priorities.
- By a vote of 40-59, the Senate rejected a proposal from Sen. Chuck Grassley (R-Iowa) that included President Donald Trump’s four immigration reform pillars. It proposed a path to citizenship for 1.8 million DACA recipients, $25 billion for border security, limits on chain migration or family-based migration, and eliminating the visa lottery system.
- Funding for “border security” without specifying a wall solution doesn’t mean we’re home-free. DHS Deputy Secretary Elaine Duke stated that her department will no longer “distinguish between border security and interior enforcement,” meaning that any money Congress appropriates to DHS for border security will be used to increase interior enforcement and terrorize communities across the United States through increased detentions and deportations.
- Over 200 organizations, including Indivisible, the ACLU, Sierra Club, NAACP and SEIU signed a letter to Congress on Feb. 13, describing the negative international, economic, environmental, civil and moral ramifications of the “White House Framework”, a policy that would essentially return America to the restrictive, racist policies of the 1920’s.
- Speaking of racism and the 1920’s… Cutting immigration may make us vulnerable to an economic depression similar to the Great Crash of 1929. Economist Clarence Barber, in his book “On the Causes of the Great Depression“, stated that the low population growth rate of the 1920’s, a product of both low birth rates and vicious immigration restrictions, caused a decline in key industries such as housing, which were significant enough to cause a serious depression.
- Right now our population growth is at the lowest point since 1937, with most of what growth there is coming from immigration.
- The estimated hit to our economy from the loss of just the DACA recipients is between $280 – 400 BILLION over 10 years.
- Modern-day Japan, a nation with a low birth rate and an aging population, is another warning to us and the health of our economy.
- ICE is now in the business of stripping citizenship from naturalized Americans, a procedure called denaturalization. Their secretive handbook describes how they are pressing to take that power away from federal prosecutors, who normally prosecute this as a civil statute only when a particular case requires it. “We believe Congress meant to have the case evaluated by prosecutors in the jurisdiction, the community,” an immigration lawyer said, instead of the first course of action as encouraged by the ICE manual.
- More than 20 refugee resettlement offices will close and 40 others will downsize their operations as America takes another giant step backwards from its moral obligations at a time when the number of refugees has hit a record high. The slated closures follow the president’s directive to dramatically reduce the number of refugees that will be allowed into the United States in 2018 from the 110,000 ceiling set by the Obama administration to 45,000 for 2018. This year’s cap on refugees is the lowest since 1980, while more than 1 in 113 people, over 65 million, are now refugees. The offices, run by private non-profit agencies that contract with the U.S. government, provide a range of services to refugees, from assisting them in finding housing and jobs, to helping them navigate banking, medical care, school enrollment and other complexities of life in America.
How to contact your legislators
Rep. Julia Brownley: (CA-26): DC (202) 225-5811, Oxnard (805) 379-1779, T.O. (805) 379-1779
or Rep. Salud Carbajal: (CA-24): DC (202) 225-3601, SB (805) 730-1710 SLO (805) 546-8348
Which one is yours?: http://www.phoneyourrep.com
Senator Feinstein: DC (202) 224-3841, LA (310) 914-7300, SF (415) 393-0707, SD (619) 231-9712, Fresno (559) 485-7430
and Senator Harris: DC (202) 224-3553, LA (213) 894-5000, SAC (916) 448-2787, Fresno (559) 497-5109, SF (415) 355-9041, SD (619) 239-3884
Other Rep./Senator Contacts: http://www.phoneyourrep.com
Red cards: The ILRC’s Red Cards help people assert their rights and defend themselves in many situations, such as when ICE agents go to a home. Order red cards for your organization here or print them out yourself in 6 different languages.
The five myths about chain migration. (wapo)