Bishops Welcome President’s Deferred Action On Dream Eligible Youth, Urge Congressional Action On Dream Act

June 15, 2012 By Public Affairs Office

WASHINGTON—The U.S. Conference of Catholic Bishops welcomedthe action of President Barack Obama today to defer action to all young peopleeligible under the Development, Relief, and Education for Alien Minors (DREAM)Act, saying that it would permit young people who were brought into the UnitedStates undocumented to come out of the shadows and more fully participate insociety.

“This important action will provide legal protection, andwork authorization, to a vulnerable group of immigrants who are deserving ofremaining in our country and contributing their talents to our communities,”said Archbishop Jose Gomez of Los Angeles, chairman of the USCCB Committee onMigration.“These youth are bright,energetic, and eager to pursue their education and reach their full potential.”

As many as 800,000 young people would be eligible to receivea deferred action on deportation for two years, and a work permit.

Archbishop Gomez said the President’s action is nosubstitute for passage of the DREAM Act and encouraged Congress to enact comprehensiveand humane immigration reform.

Full text of Archbishop Gomez’s statement follows:

Statement of Most Reverend Jose H. GomezArchbishop of Los AngelesChairman, USCCB Committee on MigrationOnThe Announcement of Deferred Action for DREAM eligible youth

June 15, 2012

On behalf of the U.S. Conference of Catholic Bishops(USCCB), I welcome the announcement by President Obama today that, consistentwith his executive authority, he will grant deferred action on a case-by-casebasis to youth who entered theUnited States by age 15 and have not committed certain offenses.Many of these youthwould qualify for immigration relief under the Development,Relief, and Education for Alien Minors (DREAM) Act.

This important action will provide protection from removaland work authorization for a vulnerable group of immigrants who deserve toremain in our country and contribute their talents to our communities.

These youth are bright, energetic, and eager to pursue theireducation and reach their full potential.They did not enter our nation on their own volition, but rather came tothe United States with their parents as children, something all of us would do.

We call upon the President also to review Administrationdeportation policies and more aggressively pursue the policy of prosecutorialdiscretion for other populations, a policy which was announced last year.Families continue to be deported andseparated, causing undue suffering.

The action by the President today is no substitute forenactment of the DREAM Act in Congress.We encourage our elected officials of both parties to take thisopportunity to work together to enact this important law, which would givethese youth a path to citizenship and a chance to become Americans.We also renew our call for bipartisan effortsto enact comprehensive and humane reform our nation’s broken immigration system

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Keywords: USCCB, US Bishops, President Barack Obama, DreamAct, immigration, college, military, Archbishop Jose Gomez.

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