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Rep. Clarke Calls on the House to Pass the DREAM Act

Today, Congresswoman Yvette D. Clarke released the following statement on as the House Floor in support of the DREAM Act:

“Madame Speaker, I rise today in full support of the DREAM Act.

“The immigrant children and young adults that are affected by our broken immigration laws are as diverse as this country. My district, the 11th Congressional District of New York, is home to a significant and diverse immigrant population. According to the Census Bureau, 47% of the immigrant population that settled in my district between 1980 and 2008 has yet to obtain naturalized citizenship.

“As a result of such a high population, my office has been inundated with cases of young adults who are either facing the threat of deportation, to a country they have never known nor had a choice to leave, or they are forced into an ‘immigration purgatory’ whereby the opportunities to obtain higher education or gainful employment are curtailed by their immigrant status.

“We cannot delay passing the DREAM Act any longer. We cannot continue to punish a community of young people that came to this country at no fault of their own. Many communities across this nation have nurtured these young people as our own, investing in their academic and social futures. Therefore, it is time for us to fully integrate the beneficiaries of the DREAM Act to utilize their talents and expertise and enhance this country’s state of greatness.

“If we turn our backs on those law-abiding contributors to our civil society, that come to our shores embracing the American dream, labor in rebuilding our great nation, strengthen our economy, and serve honorably in our military, we turn our back on ourselves.

“It is time for people of good will to stand for those who fear standing for themselves. I urge you to support the DREAM Act.”