Maria Ponce,, 202-394-2139

Issued February 15, 2018

Sáenz: Real lives are at stake. It’s time for a real bipartisan solution for Dreamers.

Washington, DC – Service Employees Union Executive Vice President Rocio Sáenz released the following statement today in advance of a Senate vote on the future of Dreamers and our nation’s immigration policy:
“Congress has finally started a long overdue debate, but now they need to act on a bipartisan solution to address the crisis created by President Trump when he callously ended DACA as part of this administration's unceasing attacks on immigrant families. But SEIU members have deep concerns about the “Immigration Security and Opportunity Act,” an amendment authored by Senator Rounds on behalf of a bipartisan group.
“The immigrant justice movement has made incredible progress in the fight against Trump's immoral actions. This amendment puts Dreamers on a clear path to citizenship, something the vast majority of the American people support, without changing the Diversity Visa program—an attack that would have disproportionately hurt immigrants from Africa—and without the deep reductions in family immigration that Trump has demanded. 
“Unfortunately, the Rounds amendment includes policy proposals that have no place in a bill that seeks to provide a future for immigrant young people. It provides a massive amount of funding at the border, including providing the Trump administration with its vanity wall.   It also includes unnecessary and harmful provisions that limit the path to legal status for parents of Dreamers, and begins to cut back legal family immigration. And unlike the McCain-Coons amendment, it would limit family immigration categories and set up an unaccountable Department of Homeland Security slushfund that could be abused by an administration that has demonstrated they are less than trustworthy.
“Real lives are at stake, like that of an incredible young woman named Yamilex. She fled here with her sister from Guatemala after their father was murdered and home was no longer a safe place. Their mom works hard as a janitor, and Yamilex is in school and an active part of her community. The United States is her home and she is exactly the type of person we should want in our country. Everyday that goes by is another day that Yamilex and other Dreamers have to live in fear of being ripped away from their families, schools, and jobs.”