October 11, 2017
LATINO LEADERS BLAST WHITE HOUSE ANTI-IMMIGRANT DEMANDS
Coalition calls for passage of a clean Dream Act
WASHINGTON, D.C. - The National Hispanic Leadership Agenda, a coalition of 45 of the nation’s preeminent Latino advocacy organizations, in the strongest terms possible rejects the White House immigration demands released Sunday evening, which call for passage of extreme anti-immigrant policies as a condition for regularizing the status of young immigrants impacted by President Trump’s decision last month to end the successful Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA) program. The White House’s list of demands is a non-starter. DACA holders and Dreamers deserve a bill that paves a path to citizenship without compromising the safety of their families and communities in the process.
NHLA unanimously passed a resolution supporting passage of a clean Dream Act, a bipartisan and bicameral bill that would provide a pathway to citizenship for young immigrants who were brought to the U.S. as children, without attaching other immigration-related measures such as those proposed by the White House in its recently released priority list. The Dream Act would give hundreds of thousands of young immigrants the opportunity to live, work, and contribute to the only country they know as home.
“The laundry list of anti-immigrant policies issued by the White House would crush American values and replace them with draconian policies dreamed up by white supremacists to tear families apart, deport children fleeing violence in their home countries, militarize our southern border, and build a wall between our country and Mexico. This list of demands is an attempt by some White House staff to shut down the debate on replacing DACA, undermining the president’s own commitment last month to support legislation that would enable Dreamers to stay in the country. Clearly, the White House is in disarray. Members of Congress need to act as the adults in the room and do the right thing: pass the Dream Act with no strings attached,” said Hector Sanchez Barba, NHLA Chair and Executive Director of the Labor Council for Latin American Advancement.
“Let us be clear, the lives and futures of hundreds of thousands of America's Dreamers are not some political bargaining chip to horse-trade to help Trump meet his ridiculous and tired campaign promises. Even for an administration that has distinguished itself for its singular cruelty toward immigrants, this latest action by Trump is a shameful new low,” said José Calderón, NHLA Immigration Committee Co-Chair and President of the Hispanic Federation.
"This White House laundry list of immigration proposals is better characterized as the dirty laundry of this Administration once again being aired out in public," said Thomas A. Saenz, NHLA vice chair and MALDEF president and general counsel. "If he wants to play a meaningful role in framing immigration policy, Donald Trump must seize back control from the white nationalist fringe in the White House and Department of Justice, and adjust his negotiating stance to far more reasonable and fact-based positioning on immigration policy matters."
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ABOUT THE NATIONAL HISPANIC LEADERSHIP AGENDA
The National Hispanic Leadership Agenda is composed of 45 of the leading national and regional Latino civil rights and public policy organizations and other elected officials, and prominent Latinos Americans. NHLA coalition members represent the diversity of the Latino community – Mexican Americans, Puerto Ricans, Cubans, and other Latino Americans. NHLA’s mission calls for unity among Latinos around the country to provide the Latino community with greater visibility and a clearer, stronger influence in our country’s affairs. NHLA brings together Latino leaders to establish policy priorities that address, and raise public awareness of, the major issues affecting the Latino community and the nation as a whole. For more information, please visit: www.nationalhispanicleadership.org.
NHLA MEMBER ORGANIZATIONS
Alianza Americas | American G.I. Forum | ASPIRA Association | Avance Inc. | Casa de Esperanza: National Latin@ Network | Congressional Hispanic Caucus Institute | Farmworker Justice | GreenLatinos | Hispanic Association of Colleges & Universities | Hispanic Federation | Hispanic National Bar Association | Inter-University Program for Latino Research | Labor Council for Latin American Advancement | LatinoJustice PRLDEF | League of United Latin American Citizens | MANA, A National Latina Organization | Mexican American Legal Defense and Educational Fund | Mi Familia Vota | National Association of Latino Arts and Cultures | National Association of Hispanic Federal Executives | National Association of Hispanic Publications | National Day Laborer Organizing Network | NALEO Educational Fund | National Association of Latino Independent Producers | National Conference of Puerto Rican Women, Inc. | National Hispanic Caucus of State Legislators | National Hispanic Council on Aging | National Hispanic Environmental Council | National Hispanic Foundation for the Arts | National Hispanic Media Coalition | National Hispanic Medical Association | National Institute for Latino Policy | National Latina/o Psychological Association | National Latina Institute for Reproductive Health | Presente.org | SER Jobs for Progress National | Southwest Voter Registration Education Project | UnidosUS | United States Hispanic Chamber of Commerce | United States Hispanic Leadership Institute | United States-Mexico Chamber of Commerce | U.S.- Mexico Foundation | Voto Latino