Development, Relief, and Education for Alien Minors Act
How it works
The mixed feelings and anxiety with solving the immigration problem have prompted several initiatives or practices that significantly limit the quality of life for the undocumented including limited access to healthcare services, restrictions on drivers licenses, and limiting access to higher education (Texas’ Top 10% Law). The DREAM Act (Development, Relief, and Education for Alien Minors) was conceived as a way of helping the estimated 65,000 children of undocumented parents achieve citizenship through college education or military service, combined with a record of good moral character.
(American Immigration Council) However, the proposed legislation faces an uncertain future with a Congress that is deeply divided on immigration reform and an American public that has opposite ideas about what the impact of increasing numbers of undocumented immigrants on their quality of life will be.
This issue affects all of the United States considering there are immigrants everywhere. The are thousands of immigrants that are affected by the lack of opportunities presented especially those who had no say in it or they were brought here at a very young age.
It also affects the nation; immigrants greatly affect the economy. The problem is really troublesome especially now that the president is trying to ban all immigrants. Many people are concerned by it because recently DACA was just stopped which was very similar to the Dream Act. This problem affects the whole nation because if immigrants can’t be given the same opportunities of studying and getting a job here then the economy will fall.
This has been a problem for a long time; a few decades ago there were a lot more opportunities given but over time the United States has become stricter and stricter with its policies and regulations which isn’t always a good thing. The Dream Act was originally introduced in 2001 and since then taken on various forms which have been reintroduced over the years to both the house and the Senate. (American Immigration Council) Some things at stake are the economy of the U.S as well as many futures of people who could be a great contribution to society. The United States already gains billions from immigrant labor and they could gain even more if immigrants could go to college and actually get jobs. Also, high school dropouts would probably decrease and people attending college would increase. Many people are interested in the problem. The most interested are probably immigrants and people who were previously involved in DACA but there are many advocacy groups also in favor of it.
A possible alternative that could give a solution to these problems would be DACA, otherwise knows as Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals, this would help because it offers some sort of relief over deportation, however, it’s not as effective because while one is a temporary solution the other is permanent. When Obama signed the executive order creating DACA he did so knowing that it could easily be undone by future presidents. President Donald Trump has now taken DACA away from thousands of immigrants. Many immigrants along with people who think it’s unfair, advocacy groups support this proposal. Barack Obama gave a statement on DACA saying ‘it made no sense to expel talented, driven, patriotic young people from the only country they know’.(CNN) Some critics of this solution are people who believe immigrants don’t deserve these rights because they were brought here illegally. Advantages of this solution would be immigrants being able to get better pay which would mean they pay more taxes, high school dropout would go down, more people going to college, more diversity and people not being afraid. Like mentioned before a big disadvantage of this is that it is a temporary solution, as it doesn’t make people qualified for DACA citizens.
The second possible solution would be to pass the DREAM Act, also known as Development, Relief, and Education for Alien Minors, this helps because it doesn’t only allow for thousands of people not to be worried about deportation but it also gives undocumented youth a pathway to citizenship. This is a permanent solution which means all of these people won’t go back to being considered illegal after they’re done studying. If the DREAM Act were to be passed it would be more difficult to be undone contrary to DACA which ended as soon as there was a different president in power. Many immigrants along with people who think it’s unfair, advocacy groups support my proposal. Some people that might oppose it are people who think it would cost a lot of money or people who think immigrants shouldn’t get the benefits of U.S. citizenship because their parents brought them here illegally. The advantages that come from this solution are that a lot of money comes from illegal immigrants working the money would go up if they could get an education and they could get better jobs, high school dropout would go down, more people going to college, more diversity, and people not being afraid. One of the disadvantages is that it could encourage more immigration. (procon.org)
As a solution to the issues presented, I propose that ‘The DREAM Act’ be approved by Congress. The DREAM Act is an American legislative proposal for a multi-phase process for qualifying alien minors in the United States that would first grant conditional residency and upon meeting further qualifications; such as a certain level of education, be granted permanent residency. It provides a path to citizenship to those who had no say in their status. It stops the threat of deportation. It would boost the US economy on multiple levels, it would allow law enforcement to redirect their efforts, and it adds diversity to the country.
Legalized students would earn more and therefore pay more in taxes. A RAND study showed that a 30-year-old Mexican immigrant woman who graduates from college will pay $5,300 more in taxes and cost $3,900 less in government expenses each year than if she had dropped out of high school. This amounts to an annual fiscal benefit of over $9,000 per person every year, money that can be used to pay for the education of others. Several forms of this bill have been previously introduced in both the House of Representatives and the Senate. A previous version of the bill, S. 2205, which required 60 votes to gain cloture, failed on a 52–44 vote in 2007, eight votes short of overcoming a filibuster by senators opposed to the bill. (senate.gov) Members in the House passed this bill on December 8, 2010, by a vote of 216–198. (c-span.org) Senators, however, debated a version of the DREAM Act on September 21, 2010, and it failed 43-56.
A little over half of the American public is supportive of providing temporary legal status to undocumented immigrants. (news.gallup.com). There are many people in support of my proposal and there have been many ‘famous’ people along with several interest groups that have spoken against our current immigration policies. There are certainly some people against it one of the more influential ones could be considered Donald Trump; I believe the reason many of these people are against it is that they are uneducated on how my proposal can positively impact the U.S. or simply don’t know what my proposal is. I think it’s quite a drastic change but it will happen slowly so I think it’s difficult to determine how people will react however recent findings based a Gallup poll showed that 75% of Americans think immigration is a good thing so I think there will be plenty of support regarding my proposal. The media has been really critical of what we’re currently doing about immigration; news repeatedly shows thousands of families being separated and the recent incident involving U.S. agents firing tear gas at refugee seekers. Social media has also been used by thousands of people to either support laws that help immigrants such as DACA or criticize measures that are currently being considered such as the border wall proposal made my president Trump. The democratic party is the most likely to support my proposal because they have been in support of laws supporting immigrants in the past such as when President Obama passed DACA, Democrats are usually more open to immigration, therefore, would probably support my proposal. Many Republicans will probably be against it because they tend to be more conservative and have recently supported people who want to really restrict immigration. The American immigration council promotes ‘laws, policies, and attitudes that honor our proud history as a nation of immigrants. Through research and policy analysis, litigation and communications, and international exchange, the Council seeks to shape a twenty-first century vision of the American immigrant experience.’this to me seems like they would support my policy because they support immigration, Immigration advocates network, united we dream is an immigration youth organization they would probably support my policy because it specifically targets them, CATO has more neutral mixed positions because they opposed some of the Obama Administration initiatives but also support changes to regulation that would loosen guest worker rules and comprehensive immigration reform.