18th Jun 2020
Home Is Here.
Chicanos Por La Causa commends and celebrates today’s U.S. Supreme Court decision in favor of DACA recipients. This is a big step forward, but the 5-4 ruling is still but a step toward the final destination of granting full citizenship to DACA recipients and a pathway to citizenship for other immigrants.
The Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals represents Dreamers, and Dreamers represent people, not politics. Dreamers as our friends, our neighbors, our co-workers, our family. Dreamers are valedictorians, leaders, role models, talented professionals, and agents of change who have been instrumental in pulling our country out of a recession and a pandemic.
DACA recipients are employed at all levels of the workforce – nurses, teachers, engineers, scientists, and laborers. We know of the many contributions Dreamers make to the economy, tax revenues, our military, our culture and to the very fiber of the fabric of our diverse nation. We know because we witness it every day.
Just as we are heartened by the U.S. Supreme Court decision, we are encouraged that business, community, churches, education and military are recognizing and appreciating Dreamers. They are joining the majority of Americans who believe Dreamers have earned status for citizenship. A recent CBS News poll found that nearly 9 out of 10 Americans support DACA recipients, including 73% of Republicans.
We’ve marveled at Dreamers’ bravery and ability to shine despite the constant fear and uncertainly that have framed their daily lives. Their positive outlook, even in the face of despair, only fuels the rest of us to demand and ensure a fair and just resolution.
Dreamers have earned everything they’ve got – from high school diplomas and college degrees to essential jobs and dynamic careers; from military service defending our freedom to being solid members for our community by renting and in many cases owning homes; from operating small businesses to being on the front lines in dealing with the pandemic. And they’ve more than earned their right to citizenship.
The rest is up to us. This nation’s history is built on making right our many wrongs. But the fact remains: There is but one sure way to fully protect Dreamers from the looming threat of cruel and inhumane deportation from the only country they’ve ever known: by passing legislation to grant them U.S. citizenship.
This will take steadfast commitment. American Dreamers cannot vote because they were born in another country, and yet they have shown their commitment to democracy by canvassing neighborhoods about the importance of voting. It is up to eligible potential voters who were born or naturalized in the United States to help Dreamers gain full U.S. citizenship too. To do so, however, will take a three-step process from the Latino community:
- Register to vote.
- Make sure to vote.
- Vote for candidates who support legislation to grant U.S. citizenship to Dreamers.
Unfortunately, too many of us in the Latino community do not even take that first step. Recent data shows that out of the 3.8 million registered voters in Arizona, fewer than 650,000 Latinos – or less than 17% of the electorate – are registered to vote.
There are many ways to register to vote, including online via ServiceArizona.com. It’s the same website to register your vehicle or change your address on your driver’s license. Meanwhile, in the weeks and months leading up to the November 3 election, many Latino organizations including Chicanos Por La Causa and its advocacy arm Chicanos Por La Causa Action Fund will be conducting voter registration efforts.
We must vote because we owe it to those Dreamers who currently cannot cast a ballot. And the bottom line is we owe it to our nation, which needs the continued contributions of Dreamers, who have more than proven their worth time and time again in both words and deeds.
Dreamers, know that we will continue to walk beside you on this journey and share the same destination: full citizenship, full participation in democracy. Together, we will get there because Home Is Here.