U.S. House of Representatives U.S. House of Representatives CSPAN February 7, 2018 11:00am-1:01pm EST
submitted the processing fee for $465 instead of $495. that's what it takes, $495. a lot of money. his entire case was sent back for that entire reason. with that rejection he received a green document stated, you are invited to resubmit your application package after you have corrected the reasons for rejection. place this letter on top of your application package. he fixed the processing fee, resubmitted his application with the green document on top of his application package. on october 31 he received the entire package in the mail with a rejection notice dated october 24 that stated uscis is no longer accepting daca applications. he's been a daca applicant for the last three years and is heart broken by the d.h.s.'s actions in rejecting his daca. . brittany was born in trinidad and toe tageo and arrived in
the united states at 3 years old. all of her friends and immediate and most extended family who are citizens and residents live near her in new york. she's a full-time caretaker for a family in brooklyn with two 14 month old sons. one who has special needs and requires physical therapy. although the child's special need were not known when she was hired, she was risen to the occasion with grace, calm, and competence according to the family of the we're devastated by the thought she may not be able to continue to work in this country. and no, we won't find another caregiver who is as reliable, nurturing, and unshakable as brit nifment she submitted her renewal application september 21 but sent back to her on october 5 because she forgot to sign her name in one place. she sent it back immediately but rejected. untimely. hugo in texas, houston, texas. a 34-year-old father who lives in houston, texas. he came to the united states from mexico when he was 6 and
lived in houston ever since. he he completed grade school works at a -- he completed wor k through 1 in houston. hugo found out from one text message of a friend on september 6 that he needed to apply before october 5 or risk losing his dacament he decided to quitly put together his application as his daca was set to expire september 9, 2017. hurricane harvey, just hit the houston area. while his home was not destroyed, the entire city of houston was shut down. including many businesses, his work was one of them. he had to borrow half the money for the application fee because he couldn't get $495 together. he was unable to get it mailed until october 4, which still of deadline. uscis received his application on october 6. on november 1, hugo received a letter from uscis denying his
renewal. you know if he got his they knew october 6 it was mailed before october 5. in time. but they turned him they knew it was down. -- that's the -- that's why the point i want to make here these are tents now that people have been -- technicalities now that people have been turned down on. and would that we all could live up to the standard that sign in every place with the date and this and that even though the information is contained in the package. hurricanes intervened in the mail service or the opportunity to put the package together. no mitigation. no consideration for that. that's really hurricanes unfort because the american people are the losers in all of that. fernando writes, i arrived in
the u.s. age 2 wearing a pink parka and matching pants clutching my mom. a single bag and abandoned her family in search of a bert life. besides nigh father in the u.s., my dad was already in alabama and they were wanting to be by his side. and the year before his decision to leave mexico he had been assaulted five times and abandoned her family in search of a bert life. besides nigh father in the u.s., my had his wedding band stolen twice. since arriving to the states, they have been able to start four businesses and create jobs. they purchased two cars and put me through college. they also have helped their u.s.-born son reach his goal to being a professional soccer player and on the olympic development program team for the southeast region. sheila jackson lee was with us in the chamber earlier. her story is one of these young people living with uncertainty is caesar, a dreamer from houston who came to america from mexico at the age of 6. cesar adopted quickly to the
texas home and became a standout student ackseg at programs for the gifted and talented throughout his primary and secondary education. faced with the constant threat of deportation, he and his family were forced to have an emergency plan in place in the event one of his family families were detained. espinoza graduated from high school near the top of his class and was accepted into some of america's most prestigious universities, including yale. but his undocumented status prevented him from obtaining financial assistance nearly shattering his college ambition. he could have given up on the instead he chose to make a difference. i know there are other young people just like me. they need someone to fight for them and try to make a way. instead he when he founded fie
immigrant rights organization based in houston. congresswoman barbara lee's constituent, emily,. a resident of alameda, california. she came to the u.s. when she was 9 from her family in south korea in the year 2000. she currently works the community health work in a federally qualified health center in oakland, california. serving underserved a.p.i. community. she graduate interested u.c. berkley in 2017 and been working as a community health worker ever since. emily says daca has changed her life and the lives of her family members. she was able to finally contribute to her family's living expenses upon graduation and to continue to pursue her dreams. emily is grateful for the protection she received under daca, but she's also deeply concerned about her mother and friends who don't have the same opportunity to come out of the shadows. while my rights as a deserving american were justified that it was no fault of my own, it automatically criminalizes my mother whose love, sacrifice, and resilience made it possible for my and my siblings to be where we're today. i am thankful for her courage
and sacrifice she made. emily's story's a reminder that we must protect dreamers but never give up the fight for comprehensive immigration reform. it's past time for long to pass the clean dream act. jose, 22 years old. when i was 4 years old, can you imagine, my parents took my little sister and me and packed up everything they owned. we got on a plane and headed to the united states to escape a country in which early stages of turmoil. my parents gave up everything they had to provide us with a sliver of a chance once they knew we couldn't live in venezuela. they made it a point to raise us well while shedding us from racism and fears of deportation. eventually we came to understand how many doors were closed to us. we pray for something, anything, daca was that something. daca has given me hope and real
chance. more importantly given me a voice. can i proudly tell my story to anyone who is willing to listen. a story about a family who is determined persistence and pursuit of an american life. daca's removal would rip that away from us, ending daca would hurt more than -- much more than 00,000 people. people not just with dreams and people that ut want to be seen, understood, and welcomed. they are your friends and neighbors -- listen, this is so important. your friends and neighbors. they are your schoolteachers, doctors, they need you to come to their side and help. call congress. have an open people that rely o be seen, conversation, on facts. this goes on and on. it's just seems like it's just an easy rely on facts. this solution. there are plenty of challenges we have that are complex, comprehensive immigration reform. issues that relate to how we prepare our country for jobs for the 21st century.
how we prepare our workers and education system and the rest. but in all of that we have to be strong as a country. and to be strong as a country true to our values. to be true to our values is to respect, to respect the aspirations of true to our values. to be people who are our future. our young people are our future. and these dreamers are part of that. they have been. they have enriched our community. they have been enriched by our community. by the goodness of the american people. by the greatness of our country. and so our plea to the speaker is not just one for the dreamers, our plea to the speaker is for us to -- for us, for ourselves, to honor the vows of our founders, our pay george --patriarch,
washington, and others who followed him. but also make it a beacon of hope to the rest of the world. claudia came to the united states when she was 5. her family brought me to a country i would call home, new language, culture, way of life. i was brought here by loving parents who wanted what was best for my future. running away from poverty and leaving family behind in hopes of a better life. daca allowed me to have my chance at a better tomorrow. i am now medical assistant and third year student at the university of utah. i am not an illegal alien. nor am i a criminal or rapist. i am a human. i'm one of the 800,000 dreamers who thrive for a better fuhr. america's my home. i didn't choose to be undocumented but i do decide to keep fighting for what is right. i keep moving forward. undocumented and unafraid. i am a dreamer and i am here to stay. did i tell you about juan?
with much foresight on the oncoming political evidence, my parents fled venezuela. in 2000. with my brothers and me in tow. we learned an immigration attorney mishandled our case which meant after six years of legal fees and paying taxes we were no longer on the path to u.s. citizenship. by the time president obama announced a deferred action for hildhood arrivals program in 2012, i graduate interested florida state university with a political science degree. i fought and lost two legislative fights to support the 2012, i dream act. helped enact a law in florida that would provide in-state tuition for undocumented students across the state and helped organize thousands of dreamers from across the country. since 2013 daca has froketted my brothers and me. i was able to return to f.s.u. for a master's degree in public dministration. i am a tallahassee resident.
mella came to the united states at 6. i now lived in the united states for 21 years. currently i work full-time as special education paraprofessional. april he also a college student. working on my third college degree. how many of us can make that claim? in may of 2018 i'm be graduating sumea couple laudy with a bachelor degree in elementary education. aal leng i have had to overcome accepting situations out of my control and have the strength to lead me to prevail in the end. i went to college to become a nurse. in 2011 my junior year of college i graduated fromle could ledge with an associate degree in nursing. i was unable to get a license due to my status. i was embarrassed i could see former peers working as nurses and i wasn't. incapable but as because hi never been taken the
opportunity to get the license. i finished my senior year in college incapable but because hi never been taken ove state i reside in as changed to allow daca recipients to receive driver's license, professional license, and certification. that is a fwulte thing. we want that -- beautiful thing but we want that for the whole country. certain things, the of dreamers to our society, the work they do every day of with the american people of which they consider themselves to be a part. the benefits they have received from working and knowing people in our country. benefit interesting the greatness of the american people. the reciprocity they have given back and honoring the american dream, working hard with a work ethic. an ethic of faith and family and community and a work ethic. usually typical of an immigration community as many
of us who are families from the immigrant community, which are all of us, unless we happen to be very blessed to be important a native american in our country. how beautiful some of the native american families in our country have been to our newcomers, to our country. our country should all be that welcoming. i think our country is. that's why the numbers are in the 80's and 90's in terms of support for the dreamers and even in the 70's among republicans for a path to citizenship. carlos writes, i am 19. born in mexico. i moved to houston when i was a year old. a year old. was raised there my entire life. i'm currently a student at the university of texas, austin. my biggest dream is to provide my parents with everything they need without them having to work. they sacrificed so much and continue to do so. i feel the least coy do daca gives me that opportunity. without it my dream has become
uncertain. this -- one of the things that i think many families in transition, that is to say the upward mobility of education in our country and length of time that families have been here, is the story of their respect for their parents. to see opportunities that they have, that dreamers in this case have, but just take any people in our country, that one generation has tremendous opportunity because of the sacrifice of their parents and grandparents. one of the attitudes aye heard from people, while they're enjoying and grateful for everything they have and the opportunity to give back to society, they have a certain sadness that their parents didn't have that same opportunity for education, reach their personal aspirations.
their aspiration was to make the future better for their children, they certainly were successful at that, but still among some young people, you hear, i wish my parents could have had this tint. how many people have ever said, if only my mother would have had this opportunity? that's in every generation, practically, because the opportunities for women have changed so much. ut in any case, i have a neighbor,est palo alto, in the heart of silicon valley, writes, i grew up in the horte they have silicon valley before and after the bubble. despite growing up in a community of violence -- you may not know that, despite having so . ch
on weekends i helped my dad clean office buildings. i picked up trash, we filled the trash can in every room. today i'm one of those in conference rooms white boarding with solve the toughest problems in big data. imagine being sneaked in in the trash barrel, helping to clean offices and now being one of the working -- the leader in the room, white boarding with engineers and managers. anyone who thinks east palo alto is a precious community doesn't live there anymore. i had to become street smart and know as an immigrant and only child i wasn't in a fogs fight back. and ld keep a low pro file
community of east palo with ut many in touch eople, a couple volunteered -- sponsored me from sixth to 12th fwrade. i met christina, or chris, who has been a mentor and friend. she helped me become a better reader and evenen chally edited a manuscript for a book. it aloud me to stay safe i feel couldn't get a cell phone, if something happened to me i couldn't call 911. i didn't have a credit history. a stanforded me school student helped me out though the phone was under her name, i paid her in cash for part of my bill
every month. so again, you see, no status new york credit, no social security number, no driver's license, 's debilitating and doubly worse because so many people are making such a valuable contribution to our society. learning from the american eople and giving back. manarie said i'll study political science in the fall. coming to this country at 6 years old change midlife. learning english, i -- everyone in my family spoke span arab and only had an elementary education. but this inspired me to dream big. after graduation, i hope to go to law school and become an immigration lawyer to help and give back to my community.
hope one day your status doesn't discourage you but encourages and embraces democracy. so many stories of so many dreamers, i want to see if we have some more from our colleagues in terms of the ones that they submitted, we had received all of these from our colleague. some of them identified as being from them or not. proud, proudagain, of these young people. not only are dreamers, but inspire the rest of us to dream. mr. speaker, i thank you for your courtesy. i'm not finished yet. i thaufpk for your courtesy in the interim and just to say i'm taking this time because i think we have an opportunity now that is almost matchless. we're at a moment when we can all come together to dedo something really good for the country.
take an action that has bipartisan support. we have no right, any of us, to associate ourselves with the aspirations of the dreamers unless we are able to and willing and courageous enough to take action on their behalf. so while some of us have been more or less receptive to receiving dreamers, learning from them, being inspired by them, some have not been as exposed to these dreamers and their stories as others. i think if you had been, i'm not maybe you just weren't exposed to them, but maybe you'd be more receptive and this house listens to the voices of the american people who overwhelmingly support our dreamers. i don't know when we'll have another opportunity that matches
today for us to just get a simple commitment from the speaker of the house that he will give us a vote. there's no guarantee. have the debate. people will weigh in. they will make their voices heard. congress again will work its will. but do not diminish this house of representatives, this people's house, a place where we don't have the right to express our views on the subject. so important to our country. that has such general support in the public. and yet the speaker of the house is saying, we don't matter. here members of the house. we don't count in this consideration. because maybe we just don't have the courage to do what we need to do. i believe we do. i believe many people on the republican side of the aisle have demonstrated even greater courage than some of us on this side. it's easy for me.
but it's also hard for me because we really, again, are in a position to do something and we feel helpless. that's what the hard part is, helpless if our speaker of the whole house will not give this dignity to this house of representatives to be able to take a vote on the subject of broad debate in the country, but we can't debate a bill on the floor of the house. the senate has received that dignity. has received that commitment. from mitch mcconnell from leader mcconnell on the republican side. but nonetheless, the senate side, but responding to bipartisan support, bringing a bill to the floor with, again, no guarantees. the debate, we'll see what path that legislation takes. but why a gag rule in the house of representatives? why a gag rule? and that is why i am voicing
some of the concerns today largely through the voices and stories of our dreamers. we want to be sure that the public record of the congress of the united states forever more will reflect the stories of their great cribs to america. in the hopes that those stories will move the speaker of the house to give us a vote, to elevate this house of representatives to its rightful place instead of diminishing us by saying the senate may talk about these subjects that the american people care so much about. not so fast in the house of representatives. that's why i'm using my leadership minute to make sure that the record will show of the magnificent contributions of the dreamers to our country.
the courage it took for their rents to bring them here and again, members are sending in their stories. from dallas, texas, from arizona state, let me read this one. this is about pitter patter, pitter patter, stretching out my hand to greet her she reiterated my name. . luis roberto ucerra, class salutatorian, isn't that great? making the salu tombings ry address. i spoke out in a crowd of thousands. this is our day, ladies and gentlemen, the class of 2012, the last 18 years of our lives, everything we've accomplished, everything we've been through has led us to today. reading these words allowed encouraged that i had made a difference. this is meant to be an honor, here i was 4.8 grade point
average, 4.8 grade point average, all honors classes, ran student g.o.p. government and some of the most successful blood drive misschool has seen and no way to do anything witism looked, watching people's reaction, waiting for me to continue and so i did. an echo was heard around the amphitheater, dispersing my voice to everyone and back to myself. spoke to everyone and here, four years later, we have to face that same feeling the bittersweet combination of nostalgia and excitement, the speech would have been great if i believed a word i was saying. it might have rang true to someone else but the advice coming out of my mouth meant nothing to myself. i could no longer follow my own advice. governing laws didn't allow to go ented immigrants
straight to college. those feelings were before daca was announced. ill still remember the chill going through my body when president obama announced dacafment i could continue my work legally and live peacefully in a world surrounded by fear. through daca i could achieve the by then college education. ic come out of the shadows and have the -- show the true potential i have without fear. it demn straited that people cared, people wanned to help and understand the situation. i recently restheaved dream u.s. scholarship for which i will be forever grateful. i currently am an undergraduate student studying at ohio state university. i arrived when i was 5 in the united states. i grew up american.
i grew up speaking english. i grew up to call the united states home. this is my home. this is think country. i'm here to stay. luis roberto. sofia deto la varga, an e.m.t. student. i was 5 years old, my mom told me we were going on vacation. . was excited i gathered my teddy bear and book bag. when i was 15 i realized our 15 was more a permanent move from a dainls country my mother gave up her entire family for us. she left her brothers and mothers. since i came to america i felt nothing but useless and not belonging. i grew up here. i want to live forever here. yet never have i been given a chance to become a citizen because i was not born here. for the longest, i had been sick and tired of living in place
where i'm not wanted. for so lock this place i call home, refuses to call me theirs. when people ask me where i'm from, i say america. my soul and heart is here. if i moved back, i wouldn't like it. i wouldn't have car, internet, friends, and getting killed is a possibility every day. i wanted to leave many times my mom, the most wonderful soul on the planet, convinced me otherwise. she fled because since the day i was born they said they were tiing to rob, kidnap and kill her. my first year -- when i first heard president obama's speech on daca, i saw the light at the end of the tunnel. it was temporary but it felt reel real. i graduated high school top of my classes, i was blessed to earn a scholarship. i will be finishing out my e.m.t. school. i hope to complete two more ears of paramedic.
i have a brother that drowned when i was younger in my home country, the police didn't come. or ambulance even i nowkah da can be taken away, ewon't be able to drive to my college or work to pay off my tuition. i will be deport. i pray for an opportunity to scotch feeling like that. there isn't room for me here. it's amazing the effect on public policy and people's lives. recordt's why i want the to show, again, everyone forever mr in the history of the united states of america will know that these dreamers are part of that history and their stories will be there to make judgments about us as to how we have responded to their greatness. .
vladimir says i'm an a.p. scholar. i'm a college student, leader, recient of scholarships and also an illegal immigrant. i'm an illegal immigrant until the deferred action for childhood arrival, executive action by president obama gave me the opportunity to live as a resident here in the united states. daca's opened many doors for dreamers such as my sefment it's made the path to success miles more tangible. inspiring me to be the best i can. daca was and is there to give a helping hand regarding my academic record, i am writing to boast about my accomplish manyment or ask for pity. i'm here to thank anyone and everyone who made daca possible. thanks to the creators of daca gave me when the compassion of the world turned a blind eye my way. i only help the new administration understand why daca is a vital part of every dreamer's life.
as a poverty stricken female immigrant i moved mountains to get where i am today. this never would have been possible. playing an important role in my life, daca is a pinnacle to the rights i cherish every day. because of daca i have been able to get my job to assist my family. it's not easy. working 30-hour plus shifts to be welcomed by school work especially since i graduated from a magnet school the science acad miff south texas. a school notorious for its workload. my hopes lie in the again o rossity of this nation continues to allow all dreamers a fighting chance for our future, hopes, and aspirations to become more than just dreamers. please, please let it be known all dreamers appreciate the assistance this nation has given us through daca. futures have been opened for dreamers who were once on certain roads. thanks to the help of daca i hope this nation does not give up on us. this nation continues to believe and see why daca is
necessary. this nation is all that most dreamers have. our nation -- lives are under the weight of this country's mercy. as much as we work, learn, pray, all we can do is hope, dream, for a hope of tomorrow, brighter road ahead a. chance o dream again. this statement talks about praying. that's why i'm so glad i mentioned at the beginning that the three b's, the bible, the badges, and business community are so supportive of giving relief to the dreamers. let's talk about the bible. i talked about the gospel of matthew. the parable of the good samaritan. the dignity and worth of every american. spark of divinity. christ coming down bringing his divinity to humanity. to led our humanity
participate in his divinity. we have to respect that spark in others but be responsible for it in ourselves. and that is the challenge that we have. hope sitting there between faith and charity. the goodness of others. we all have hope that when we have needs, we believe, we have safe that others will be there for us. what america is about. america's great because america is good. say it over and over again. this fabulous, greatest country in the history of the world. think about t our founders how urageous they wrfment they decided to declare war on the greatest naval power then in the world, the british navy, military. they declared in the declaration of independence their grievances against the king, but they also stated their aspirations. aspirations about people being created equal. no country has ever been founded on that principle
before. unalienable rights under god, just remarkable. bestowed on them by their creator. this is a remarkable people. and then they fought the war, won the war. they established our founding documents. my daughter wrote a movie on it . didn't write it because it was written by the founders. words that made america. our declaration, our constitution, our bill of rights. thank god they had the brains to make our constitution amendable. in it being amendable it became this incredible document with the bill of rights and then others that we take an oath to protect and defend. at the same time as they did they created the faith seal of the united states of america. i referenced it earlier. it's on the dollar bill. you see that triangle with the eye. used to scare me when i was little. what's that? a pyramid with an eye? , forever, and
ever, and ever, but in this it's new order of the ages. they had so much confidence in what they had established and what they were doing that was so new and fresh to the world they became a beacon to the world. but in doing this new order for the ages, they had confidence and optimism that this would last forever because it was predicated on the idea every generation would take responsibility. make the future better for the next. i said earlier the american dream, people block to our shores. bring their aspirations, hopes, determination, courage to make the future better for their families. and then in adopting -- their traits were like american traits. characteristics of optimism, hope, and courage and making the future better. all these newcomings to our -- newcomers to our shores they made america more american with
their commitment to a better future for their families. that continues to this day. and these people now, these young people, are called dreamers. their parents had a dream for them to bring them to our country. but they completely adopted to our way of always being better future a in our country. they learned from the american people. they taught the american people. it's a beautiful relationship. and now we have an opportunity to show our greatness as a country. to honor the vows of our founders, the courage they had to find a path, a solution, a result so that we can put this aside and address other issues that relate to immigration, which are a bigger picture. more complicated. take more time. equire more public debate. why can't we just do this? this is discreet. congresswoman michelle lujan
grisham, chair of the hispanic caucus, said this so beautifully when we testified before the rules committee on immigration. on the dream act. she said, think of this bill like chip. chip, our children's health insurance program. it's about the children. it's not a bill that talks about universal health care. the whole health care system of our country. it's about the children. we have the immigration issue similar to being a big comprehensive issue. but then we have this little piece that is for the children. i think it was a perfect analogy. chip is health care for the children. it doesn't address the whole health care system. changes that people may want to make and improve. or change. it's about the children. n easy path for us to go down.
recognizing that it is not a substitute for what we need to do to address immigration reform in our country. but a first step, not a step instead of. and it's a confidence building step that we can find common ground in a bipartisan way. we must. if it's going recognizing that it is not to b sustainable. just as the bill was in 1986 that president reagan improved upon with his family fairness initiative. so that's why let's just think about the children. we should always be thinking about the children. they are the future. they own the future. they are it. when children come to washington, d.c., and they sit and see how we honor our founders, george washington, lincoln, later to save the nion, but earlier thomas
jefferson, etc., walk these halls and see tributes to people who went before, we say in most cases this is about respecting jefferson, the contributions these people made to our country. especially our big monument on the mall and most recently reverend martin luther king jr. there. we honor them. we learn from them. we value them. values we do here is based and how they taught us, but it's about the future. and this is about how we can go into the future making distinctions, discerning, discerning having the ability to say, there's some things we can get done, let's do them. other things take more time. let's build confidence, build bridges in what we do. again, always trying to do it with bipartisanship, with transparency so people know what the debate is and what's in the bill, and with the -- that brings unity to our country. i think that is very possible.
i'm very proud to read these statements into the record. i will continue to do so. during the night when i was thinking and praying so hard about our dreamers i thought maybe we should just pray all day on the floor of congress. maybe i should bring my rosary, blessed by the pope, his holiness, pope francis, or the one before that, benedict. i have had the honor and privilege of receiving rosaries blessed by several popes in my lifetime. but i always remember what pope benedict when he came, he spoke so beautifully. his first encyclical is called god is love. in it he quotes 17 centuries ago it was said any government that is not formed to promote justice is just a bunch of thieves. that's what st. august continue said -- augustin said 17
centuries ago. he, benedict, goes on to say sometimes it's hard to define what justice is, in doing so we must beware of the dazzling blindness of power and special interest. that's what he said. but this doesn't have any of that. this has social justice, it has camaraderie, it has good spirit, and it's based on aith, hope, and charity. hope francis when he came spoke so beautifully as he always does about respecting immigrants. he is living in a much more complicated world of immigrants coming into europe. but again respecting the dignity and worth of every person. he came here in this chamber and spoke about few subjects as you recall, one of them was poverty and how we respect the dignity and worth of people that god -- christ mentioned so any times.
as we know, poor people are mentioned in the bible. hundreds and hundreds and hundreds of times because of how important our responsibility is to them. but he also talked about immigration. talked about immigration -- immigration in a very important way. as i get his statement, i will then read from gloria, a medical assistant from dallas, texas. a girl who you graduated next to. a girl who talked to you daily. a girl who has finally decided to step away from the shadows and into the light for to you see her. see me for who i am not someone told you who i would be. i'm immigrated to the whuns i was a year old with my parents. my parents had taken the decision to immigrate due to being in a country that offered no future for their families. even though both my parents ran
a successful business and my mom had a college education, the violence and unemployment was you graduated next to. a girl who talked to you daily. a girl who has finally no futur the first place we called home was a small apartment in dallas, texas, who we shared with another family. we lived in texas for a year. moved to statesville, north carolina. outskirts of the little down in run down trailer homes. i made a makeshift bed out of a piece of cardboard and blanket. after months of saving money my dad finally had enough to rent an apartment near downtown statesville. after nine years we moved to texas. growing up my parents never hid the fact i was undocumented from me. they always told me just because you are not born here does not mean you are any less. are you loved by many regardless what you might hear on tv. those words became my rock when i was in high school, freshman my mom was diagnosed with stage 4 breast cancer. for months she struggled trying to find treatment at an affordable rate. doctors would turn her down because of her illegal status even though she offered to negotiate a payment plan.
she was dying and no one seemed to care. her own sin was to be undocumented. she found treatment. but hi seen firsthand how dehumanizing people can be toward the undocumented. during this time daca was put in place and opened the door for me. daca gave me wings. i participated in national pageants, placing as a national achievement finalist, i graduated high school with a medical assistant certificate. daca has given me a chance to give back to others. dreamers -- u.s. immigrants are in the here to harm the u.s. it is our home and will always be our home. for that i'm willing to come out of the shadows so you can see e.
this is again, the american dream of making the future better is recurring in all of these stories and in all of hese stories, there has been it's not just about dreamers, it's about who we are. luis roberto. we talked about him, we had his speech from his graduating class. luz writes, i came to the u.s. from mexico when i was 2 months old. i didn't know i was undocumented until my sophomore year of high school when i couldn't get a driver's license or go to college like my friends. i was depressed for years until daca. fund to help people
in hi high school who were undocument. my announce. of my daca end has put me back into a state of depression. i'm trying to overcome. my dream is to be an educator, activist, and writer, to inspire dreamers like myself who are currently or have been in a state of depression due to their legal status. we have to remember how strong the dreamers are, but how fragile some of their existence is when they have no certainty as to what the next steps will be for them. again, this is all about family. about parents who had the courage to bring their children at an early age to america. it happened 100 years ago. do you think all the people came here, all came documented? maybe we should all look up our
ancestry and just find out what the facts are about that. we assume so. but do we really know? and there are many people, as i said earlier, italians were called wops. without papers. that was a derogatory term. it's disgusting for me to say it. being an italian american so proud of my heritage. as i said, we grow up thinking the world was divide among two people in america, those who were italian american and those who wanted to be italian american. certainly feels that way in little italy in baltimore where i grew up and in san francisco that i have the honor to represent. in any event we all take pride now heritage. that's the best, best qualification for recognizing the pride that other people take in their heritage.
i say this to italian americans all the time because i'm so proud to be an italian american, i understand full well why people from mexico or puerto rico or africa or wherever they're from take pride in who they are. their dignity. the awe tentiesity of their heritage and who they are. and in america that beauty, the beauty is in the mix. it certainly is in my district. but in some communities, the cricks of immigrants is not as recent and is -- as it is in others. but in every community, it has made a difference, constantly reinvigorating america. so when his holiness, pope francis, came to speak here in the congress as a catholic italian american, essence of my being, it was really thrilling day. it was for all of us, regardless of our background or our faith.
i was particularly thrilled to hear what he said about immigration. but you recall, he talked about martin luther king, march from selma to montgomery he talked about people living in poverty he talked about number of subjects. but i'll just speak to what he aid about immigration. his holiness said, this is a quote of his, in recent centuries, millions of people came to this land to pursue their dream of building a future in freedom. we, the people of this continent, because as -- because as you know, his holiness is the first pope from the western hemisphere we can the people of this continent are not fearful of foreigners because most of us are once foreigners. i say this to you as a son of immigrant, italian, by the way, i say that as a son of immigrants, knowing so many of
you are also descended from immigrants. tragically those rights of those who were here long before us were not always respected. for those people an our nation and if the heart of america's democracy, i wish to reaffirm my highest esteem and appreciation. those first contacts were often turbulent and violent but it's difficult to judge the past by the criteria of the present. nonetheless, when the stranger is in our midst abush within our midst appeals to us, we must not repeat the sins and errors of the past. we must resolve nobodyably to ve as nobody pli -- as nobly or justly as possible, we must not turn our back on our neighbors. we must constantly relate to others, rejecting the mindset of hostility in order to adopt one of resipry call subsidiaryity in a constant effort to do our best. i am confident we can do this.
how beautiful. then he goes on to talk about immigration and the rest of the world. , let us e says remember the -- he said, we need to avoid a common temptation nowadays to discard whatever proves troublesome. let us remember the golden rule. do unto others as you would have them do unto you. i'll submitn, he -- the whole statement for the record because it goes on in such a beautiful, beautiful way. there, out climate in about god's creation, this planet. i'm talking about his holiness, get to the bible part of it, we talked about the bible earlier, i thought maybe we could say the the house, not
just five, but all the mysteries of the rosaries, 15 decades. nonetheless, i think these people telling their stories are very prayerful. so we'll use their time -- the time to put their store throins record. let me just say how proud i am of the statements made by the u.s. -- the catholic conference of bishops. their courage and fighting for immigrants across our country. from our cardinal our bishop, etc., from their esteemed platforms, whether it's the dreamers or t.p.s. or comp rehence i immigration reform. but right now, today, wore talking about the dreamers. the evangelicals in our country. reverend rodriguez's statements have been so great about this, the spark of beginity that
exists in every person that must be respected. strong supporters of president trump, also believing that it's possible for all of us to have enough goodness in our hearts to get this job done and go past any obstacles that may be there. again, the national -- the baptist convention, the southern baptist convention, their lead ship, all across the spectrum. of course the jewish community, across the full spectrum of faith-baysed organizations, all speaking out. and rallying, as people rallied when we first saw the muslim ban. pee -- the people of faith are people of faith. they believe. and they believe that we have obligations to each other. they've spoken out in a courageous way. in terms of the badges, i told you some stories about dreamers who have come forth to help with
law enforcement. this by and large we have had strong support from the law enforcement community about support for the dreamers. and the business community. they have been spectacular in terms of raising the profile, treating their employees who are dreamers with respect, , they seem r them to have a strong voice on some issues, wish they would be listened to as attentively on issues of social justice here but they do have access. and one of the things i want to aise them for is i think the 90%, 80%, 70 mkt ratings of, depending on the citizenship or what, but the high you were ins across the board for dreamers would not have been possible without people hearing from the bishop from law enforcement and
the business community making this a very high profile issue about how their companies have benefited from the dreamers and how they truly believe. this is not an issue that is going to go away. it's a value. it's not an issue. it may be a subject for legislation. but this is an american value that has deemly felt across the board. i am determined that the stories of at least some of these dreamers, can't do 00,000, although i'm willing to take the time, it might lose impact after a while, some of these great stories. listen to this one. i'm from los angeles, 18 years old, will be attending ucla to study political science in the fall. being an undocumented student has been tough. coming to the country at 6
change midlife. i want to go to law school. i told you this story but it bears repeting. i pray that immigration status couldn't change our path. alonzo growing up undocumented in utah shaped who i am today my ex-importance growing up in the margins of society inform the work i do and work i seek to continue doing in this life. i'm passionate about working with undocumented students and families and strive to share my knowledge and experience with the undocumented and the community as a whole. i was born in peru, immigrated to the united states when i was 11. to mother. th my brother he came into the country with legal status. this is something that i think is important. not everybody who is undocumented came here in an undocumented fashion. some of the documentation has pired and the case of daca
just question of when the mail hit and what tai it was received by the government. i came as one of the 11 million, i was 12, a hardworking student, earning good grades, working to a future to allow me to repay my mom for all her sacrifices. in high school, i enrolled in honors and a.p. classes, i graduated from high school with a diploma of merit, went to the youth of utah where i would major in sociology and be mentored by many individuals, most pointedly, matt bradley, rest in peace 20, 12. davidn cahill, ph.d., and sereser. my work showed me the contribution and insights of undocumented people are porn. my mentors showed me how
important. i truly owe them for showing me i matter for being who i am. i graduate -- graduated with an honors bachelor of science in sociology and i'm dreamer program coordinator for the university of utah which is the first center for dreamers in the state of utah. god bless you, utah. i would like to pursue a ph.d. in sociology with a focus on immigration an loy boar studies. this is important because once again as has been consistent in these theme the dreamers are grateful for the mentoring they have received from people in our country. some of whom may share their heritage, most of whom did not. and that's the beautiful thing about the dreamers, they know their dream, they have a dream, but somebody else had a plan for their own dream that inspired the dreamers to have their plan.
when yuri hernandez was only 2 years old her family brought her to the united states from mexico. she grew inas an honor student, active in her community. the went to the university of portland. she's now a graduate student at the michigan school of social work, planning to grg wait with a masters in social work in the fall of 2017. in her pair time she tutors and mentors high school students shsm edreams of becoming a social worker and giving back to her community. ray was brought to america when he was two years old. a devout catholic and now i a priest in atlanta, georgia. and father ray will lose his legal status and be deported. and tragically for him and his congregation. father ray and other daca recipients have a key role to play in healing the differences
that divide us. oscar was brought to park city, utah. excellent student and now attends dartmouth. if he loses his legal status, he could be deported back to mexico. will america be strong if we deport oscar? if he stays here and achieves his dream of becoming an educator, the answer is clear, daca works. and another, growing up in loiled and involved in her community. she attended harvard and received awards and participated activities. icular and donald trump and other republicans have made their agenda clear, they want to deport hundreds of thousands of dreamers. that's her view.
i hope we have a better understanding of where the president may be on this. we don't want her to be deported back to chile. cynthia was seven years old, her family came from mexico and grew up in denver. she wanted to attend the university of denver where she received scholarships. d graduated with a degree in cognitive neuroscience which is a doubling major in psychology and biology and minor in chemistry. she applied for daca in 2013. and working in northern university and doing clinical research in the division of card yolling and she is improving patients who suffer. she said daca has meant a new realm of turnt and allowed me to pursue my dreams.
i truly believe that those opposed had a chance to sit with us, their opinions might change. they would see how hardworking individuals who love this country and want to continue to its prosperity. this is our home. that is really beautiful. i do believe that more colleagues know the dreamers, the better it will be for our country. ashley came to the united states from mexico when she was five years old. and she felt safe and exceled in math. nearly perfect scores on standardized tests. ashley discovered the love of engineering and exceled and active in her community. ashley has gone on to attend arizona state university. again, i mention a great school. she does not qualify for any
government assistance and has to pay out of pocket tuition despite lick in arizona most of her life. ashley decided to crowd fund her college education and she shared her story online and brought in enough contributions to pay for her tuition and she is in her second year of college. and made the dean's list with 3.79 g.p.a. thanks to daca, ashley is able to work to support herself and volunteer. as a result of her volunteer work, she has decided she wants to become a scienceist. i have been going through some of these rather quickly in order to get as many of them on the record as possible. change my pace a little bit because some of the stories are so emotion-filled
and place the statement in the record, but i want to deliver the stories -- i'm trying to be respectful of other people's time but i'm trying to be respectful of the challenge that face and the need for us to find a solution, which is clear in sight for our dreamers. fer nan doe's family came to the united states when he was in high school. in high school, he was an a.p. scholar and received achievement award for french. continued to excel at santa clara university and had a double major in biology and french. third year student at u.c. san fabulous, the ultimate lace, he found it was very
hard. works at a comprehensive cancer center where he is providing new insights into many diseases and disorders. again, giving back, giving back. denise rojas in 1990, when she was an infant, her parents carried her across the southwest border to give her and her siblings a better life. and she settled in california. and she said in grade school, i recall feeling different from my peers, my skin color was darker, i was poor and i was undocumented. in 2012, when president obama established daca, her life changed as a daca recipient, her dreams seemed within reach and able to apply to medical school.
but turned away because of her immigration status. she could pursue a career in medicine and no longer fear the possibility of losing the only owned.e had ever she pledged allegiance and considers united states my home. everyone deserves the opportunity for prosperity. i thus aim to dedicate my life to serving others as a physician and continue to be a voice for immigrants. reading denise's story about her being concerned in grade school and feeling different and my skin color was darker and language was stilted. i'm reminded of my own grandson, he is irish, english, whatever, whatever and italian-american. but he looks more the other side of the family, shall we say.
sixth n he had his birthday, he had a very close friend whose name is antonia and rom guatemala and tan skinned, beautiful brown eyes and this was a proud day for me, when my grandson blew out the candles and said did you make a wish? what is your wish? >> i wish i had brown skin and brown eyes like antonio. so beautiful. so beautiful. the beauty is in the mix. the face of the future for our country is all american. and that has many versions. my er daca recipient, parents raised me tosh gritty and never to complain or take handouts. i didn't want to have a victim
mentality for being known being undocumented. sharing my story would be therapeutic, raise awareness and help underprivileged people. i came to america when i was six years old and my parents were poor and moved us here. my dad is a waiter in a small restaurant, which is enough to put food on the table and clothes on our backs. we pay taxes, abide by all laws and don't live on welfare. as for me, i can't legally work, drive, fly or have health insurance. i have missed out on numerous opportunities because of my situation. i was able to pursue college. fast forward four years, i have graduated in computer engineering from wichita state university. i was at the top of my class, number one in my major, authored two papers and have a patent pending. consequently i was accepted into
graduate school at columbia university. however, do my status, i have to get a stipend to continue my education. receiving daca would be able to provide for my family and master my craft. but due to election results, applying for daca is not a favorable option anymore. without daca, many live in fear of deportation. i have friends whose families were torn apart. there are every day struggles and easy to dismiss it because it's not happening to your family. you need to dig deep and feel our pain and our anxiety. this is very important message, or us to dig deep. and experience their pain and anxiety. many non-native americans that
they, too, have immigration in their blood. we want an opportunity to contribute to the only home we know. i enjoy the adversity. i feel alive under pressure. i'm faxed. e's not leaving. burg, adys from phillips new jersey. patience and heartache is how i would describe my past. i was two when my family made the most important decision for us, moving to the u.s. meant a second chance for me. if we stayed in mexico, my folks would have made a decision to give me up for adoption. unfortunately at the age of four, my innocence was stolen from me. i was sexually molested by a 15-year-old boy and didn't
report it because they feared deportation. they worked full-time to put a roof over our heads. i wasn't able to go off to college financially. i'm used to doors slamming in my face. i was 14 when my parents explained to me about our status. confused about my future, i decided to charter. i finished school full-time and contributed back to the community. i received a tax pay iri.d. issued by the i.r.s. in 1997. i thought it was funny that the government would take our money and not let us work legally. i applied for daca in 2012 and still remember the day and opened my approval letter and my father said, now i don't have to worry about you. and i own my own home and car. fflecks day, this dream is
ending and reality check that privileges could be taken away. i hope for others to make to push that door open to know the dream of wanting more is not impossible. this is one of the daca that -- one of the dreamers i met at the state of the union. perhaps you remember, america is her name and guest of david price of north carolina and she spoke at our press event with the dreamers. america came to the u.s. since two years old and lived in raleigh for 22 years and earned a bachelor and masters' degrees and teaches english as a second language at a high school. she was so lovely. and thank david price for introducing us.
another guest is someone you may call is the guest of senator harris. denaya and she is a daca recipient who came from belize. she attended the university of california, los angeles, where she advocated for the immigration attorney position and helped daca recipients. i wish you could have heard her tell her story with intellect. she says young people for a fellow, she addressed daca educational access and retention d her story was in the "l.a. magazine" and is part of the undocumented stories in the labor center. for undocu rdinator
black, which is a resource for many of the deemers who are ack, where she helps undocumented immigrants. aspires to be a human rights attorney advocating for the most marginalized around the globe. r story was in the "l.a. magazine" and is on display. and now it will be part of the congressional record. . miriam says, i'm 18 years old, enrolled at university of california, riverside. i come from a mexican background, i was born in a mexican state, have been hiing in the united states since i was 2. i went to preschool, kinder, elementary, intermediate and
high school in the state of california. i have always loved school. i remember being a little girl and getting home from school and the first thing i did was start my homework. i remember that as early as elementary school, this test called gate. it was supposed on the smart kids' test and every year i passed it. i remember being an honor student miffle parents were very persistent on me getting good grades because that meant a better future. it wasn't until i was in high school where i realized that maybe it was going to take more than just good grades to go to college. i became really aware that i was undocumented, i became fearful i was going -- i was not going to have a better future because i was undocumented. i knew that financially, my parents wouldn't be able to pay for college. when daca came into play it was a huge relief. there was finally a program that accepted me dasm ka means verything to me. not only do i have an
opportunity for college but i have this eopportunity to work legally. to be able to make money for my needs. daca has become a reassuring force for many students. like myself. whose only desire is to be given an education or to become a successful factor in this society. i'm proud to be mexican heritage but i'm also proud of america's great educational system. daca has given me the opportunity to dream on my own -- dream of my own white picket fence one day. this is interesting to me because as an italian american myself, i always reference people are proud of their heritage, especially newer immigrant, to see the pride they take in their heritage and the fierce patriotism they have for america. that was what we saw in our community when i was growing up. fiercely patriotic americans. while very proud of their
heritage. and that is who people are. that's their authentic self-. patriotic americans, proud of their heritage. want to make, as was said in this, to be legal. ana sanchez from el fwmbings in, texas. like many other beneficiaries of daca, for once i have been given the opportunity to pursue my dreams. i attained higher education and a job. i am ana sanchez, an 18-year-old undocumented student who was brought to this country when i was only 2 years old. due to living conditions in my home country, my parents decided to immigrate to the united states to offer me and my sister much better education and a better future. growing up, i was aware that i had been born in mexico but i did not know the effects of being undocumented until high school.
now that i'm older, i realize i was who i am in the eyes of the government and it saddens me to know people believe these misconceptions of us. i mean, ever since we arrived to texas , my dad has risked his health and life by working under dangerous circumstances just to earn enough money to provide food and shelter for our family. when it was announced daca would be available to people like me, my family did not think twice, we all knew it was an advantage and precious opportunity the country has given us. finally, we had given -- been given the chance to prove we are part of this country's future and this country's success. because of daca, i'm able to say that i am a part-time student, part-time staff, for an after school program. i am two steps closer to becoming a businesswoman and teacher and that gives me hope. sadly, however, the new administration posed threats that would make my hope and
dreams unreachable. with the permanence taken away, our hard work will become worthless. i yearn for congress to give me a chance to give back to this country. many of the stories that i've been reading so far have been, but not all, but have have been about people in our own hemisphere. but it's important to note that many undocumented are from the asian pacific region, many are from africa or the caribbean. that's our hemisphere but not in terms of latin america but in terms of the caribbean and so some are even from other places that are not necessarily ethnically diverse. here's one, today i want to tell you about han yoon li. when she was 6 years old, her
family came to the united states from south korea. she grew up in michigan. here's what she says about her childhood in the united states of america. quote, i was fortunate enough to grow up learning that diversity is encouraged and difference are not just stoll rated but welcomed. he was a -- she was a good student and committed to public service. in high school she was a member of the national honor society, received the principal's academic achievement award and was an open activities association scholar athlete. track a member of the and field team for four years of high school. she volunteers with the red ross and works with an organization called the supply which raises noun help people in nairobi, kenya. she's a south korean, all-american girl and
co-president of an organization to help students in nairobi, kenya. organization to work electly with detroit charities. she's also an intern at the advancing wrussties center. she dreams of becoming a lawyer to advance civil rights. she wrote me a letter and she said, quote, although -- although i'm legally labeled in this country i call home, i believe i'm an american. i believe this not solely because i live, work and study and contribute in this country, because i believe in the core lues of america as a nation, liberty, justice, and prosperity. she and other dreamers have so much to contribute to our country but without daca or the dream act they will be deported back to countries they haven't lived in since they were children.
will america be a strong country if we deport people like her? the answer is clear. that is a question that has arisen throughout, we asked it earlier. will america be a strong country these people? i love what she said, i believe that is not so because i live, work and study and contribute in this country, i believe in the core values all americans share as a nation of liberty, justice, nd prosperity. etting more. tomas is a daca recipient from auburn, california. at the age of 2 he came to the united states from mexico with his mother in search of a better life. fortunately, after a year of being together in the united states, his -- unfortunately, after a year of being together
in the united states, his mother pass aid way from cancer. his grandparents took him in, he grew up in northern california where he ran cross country and track at frazier high school. these all american kids, just a beautiful story. following his high school career he received an associate oarts in social science and in 2014 he completed his bachelor of arts degree. today he works with a nonprofiting ornyization lark tino leadership council. he also intends to attend lincoln law school in sacramento, california, in the spring of 2018. he co-founded the california dreamers with a fell he daca recipient. they seek to change the negative narrative surrounding immigration with facts. they want to change the narrative with facts. with proof. and through sharing personal story. the ultimate goal is to encourage imfration reform and to establish a pathway to citizenship.
vanessa rodriguez, my name is vanessa rodriguez, and they all call me undocumented dreamer. undocumented because i was born south of the united states border and dreamer because that was the inherent last name that my parents gave me when they risked their souls to give me a dream, a better future. dreamer. calls her dreamer. i have lived in texas for 12 year. for 12 years i have known no other home my father works in construction , my mother works as a house maid. their hard work have given my family a chance to do more and dream higher. a chance that made me salutatorian of my class and recipient of the state of texas student hero award. however, their work only granted me a chance to dream. not a chance to accomplish. only the government could grant me that. for years i lived under the notion of fear and uncertainty.
dreamers like me kept their dreams and secure themmed in a box called limitations. it was not until the arrival of daca that things started to change for us. daca enabled us to pursue and achieve more. for me it meant an opportunity of pursuing higher education, attaining a job and acquiring something called temporary security. one year of this security from deportation was what made the beginning of my dream a success. i was free from fear of deportation that enabled me to gain confidence in my ability. people sharing their stories in many cases ay, in very well written way. a few weeks ago i finished my first semester at university of texas at austin, a very hard school to get into, by the way. although i was a full-time student with two part-time jobs i managed to on stain an outstanding g.p.a. daca maze need -- made these
accomplishments possible and made the difference between simply existing and living a dream. as the time a proy -- approaches for a new administration the fear is starting to become more evident. the uncertainty and anxiety is real miffle question is congress is, when will you unchain my dreams? when will my -- my only hope is taken away or will you fight to protect students like me from deportation? not even a fight. it's a simple decision. tst a simple decision. made easy bicep rating it from the more complicated and controversial aspects of omp rehencive immigration reform which we must address. it's about the children. it's about the children. alonzo's story goes like this. i always remember the day that daca was announced. it was june 12, 2012. excuse me, june 15, 2012.
i was camping for a retreat with friends, students, and colleagues from the arts and activities collective, a youth participatory action research collect nive salt lake city, utah. at approximately 10:00 a.m., the group took a break from the agenda, which i used to go back to the tent and check on my phone. when i turned my phone back on, i was taken aback by the numb of text messages, missed calls and voice mails i was received. buzz, buzz, buzz, buzz, she writes. the dream act puzz bassed, the dream act was passed, shouted a close friend of mine a fell he dreamer , in a voice mail. i was excited, but confused by her words, knowing at the time no dream bill was being debate in the u.s. senate or congress. as confused as i was i was too adrienalized at the possibility of a dream act boxcar bill had
made its way to becoming law. after returning her call we shared feelings of excitement and confusion regarding the matter at hand. then she manufactured -- informed me president brakebrauk would making an announcement at any moment. i called my mom and ran outside o the tent to reform the group about the news. within minutes, can you imagine the excitement? we were out camping, within minutes all participants crammed ourselves into two cars in little cottonwood canyon and uned in to the radio to hear president obama announce the program we have all come to know as deferred action for childhood arrival, daca. my story is one of hundreds of thousands of daca stories across the united states. we all have different backgrounds, first names and last names, interests, journeys, and goals. however we all have one thing in common. we are all american dreamers.
since daca, i have earned an honors b.s. in sociology a masters in education, an educational leadership and policy at the university of utah. i'm an active community member, most recently been honored to serve as dream program at the university of utah where i seek to support undocumented students through access, persist, and achieve higher education in the country we all call home. the way they write the way they write stories and the excitement and anxiety they convey is something that the printed word may not convey but the record will show the effects of all of these stories. i wish you could see them. a person who has seen more of them honors us with his presence in this chamber. we all get emotional on this
subject, but no one has put more brain power and passion into this subject than the distinguished senator from illinois. he has served in this body for a long time, so we know of his leadership and his values. but for all the years he served in public life before congress and since and in the house and as a leader in the senate, the dreamers have been a priority for half of his service in public life. first introduced the dream act in 2001 into the senate. by s introduced representative roybal-allard. she is the mod mother of the dream act. in 2010, we were able to pass the dream act in the house under the leadership of mr. durbin, senator durbin and received the
majority of the votes in the united states senate, but did not reach the 60 threshold and so the discussion goes on. shortly thereafter, president obama issued the daca executive order. none of this success would have been possible without the leadership persistence, optimism and the courage of senator durbin. and he has heard all of these stories, so many of these stories firsthand for nearly two decades. so i congratulate him and as i said earlier, our call today is for our speaker to give the same opportunity to house members to vote on our dreamers' bill, just as you were able to achieve in the senate, senator mcconnell, the senate leader, working with bipartisan groups, which you have always been a part, it has always been about bipartisan to
pledge to bring to the senate floor a vehicle that you will act upon. no guarantees that the senate will work its will. what dignity that brings to the united states senate. what commitment to the purpose of america that is there. and feel like second-class members of congress over here when it's not within our realm to discuss something that's being discussed across the country in the senate of the united states at the white house, but here, we can't have the opportunity to officially discuss legislation that is on the floor. and that is why i'm taking this time, my congressional leadership one minute to read into the record these inspiring stories. again, excuse me for being emotional, but when i think of the contribution that senator durbin has made to this, the
stories he has heard, the stories he has told, seeing him receive with great respect and honor across the country, getting so many awards from people who see him as a person who understands their anxiety and concern. but as important as that, their possibilities and contributions to america. and why, as i said earlier, senator durbin -- think of this as the chip versus health care the chairwoman of the hispanic caucus. think of this as chip versus health care. one clear opportunity where we can come together, not as a substitute for comprehensive, but as a step, confidence building, trust building, in a bipartisan way with transparency
and in a unifying way for our country. that'sank you -- because why i'm not able toll yield, otherwise, i would have nearly 200 people seeking recognition on the floor to tell the stories of their dreamers. i have told some of them, but our colleagues are committed and unified on this subject and their constituents are. but since -- even if our colleagues on the other side of the aisle would say, would the gentlelady yield, the rules do not allow me to yield. i thought about saying the ross ari on the floor -- rosary to pray for our leadership with a eart full of love. not just five, but all 15,
including the glorious mysteries. they were the sad ones in the middle, the crowning of thornse, scourging at the pillar. ok and then we take to the glorious. prayerful. i believe in prayer. and so many of our -- as i said, call it bible constituency, the national catholic conference of bishops, the evangelical community, which has been so spectacular in supporting immigrants to our country and especially in this case, of dack a -- daca. here's what the -- this is a statement of the united states catholic conference of bishops. the president and vice president
along with the chairman of the u.s. conference of catholic bishops, president and vice president of this organization, along with the u.s. chairman of conference of bishops denounce the administration's termination of the deferred action of childhood arrival program. the following statement that the united states catholic conference of bishop president along eston, texas and with the archbishop of california and chairman on bishop joseph tyson, chairman of the subcommittee of says the cancellations of the daca program is republic hence i believe. over 780,000 youth receive protections of the darka program by the department of homeland
security in 2012. daca provided no legal status of government benefits, but did provide recipients with temporary employment authorization to work in the united states and reprieve from deportation. quote,, the cancellation of the daca program causes unnecessary fear for daca youth and their families. these youths entered the united states as minors and known america as their only home. the catholic church has watched with pride and admiration as daca youth live out their daily lives with hope and determination to flourish and contribute to society. continueing to work and provide for their families, continuing to serve in the military, continue to receive an education. a a few months of anxiety and fear about their futures, they face deportation. this decision is unacceptable
and does not reflect who we are as americans. the bishops go on to say, the church has recognized and proclaimed the need to welcome young people, whoever welcomes the children in my name welcomes me. mark, 937. that's so beautiful, because what they are saying is when you reject these new comers, you are rejecting them who sent them but who sent them by our lord, but our lord. today our nation is doing the opposite of how scripture calls us to respond. let us step back from the progress we need to make as a country. today's actions represent a heartbreaking moment in our history. let's show mercy and goodwill. daca youths are would he haven into the fabric of our society and our church and are by every
measure social and human measure merican youth. we strongly urge congress to immediately resume work towards a legislative solution. we pledge our support to find a means of protection of daca youth. the bishops go on to say, as people of faith, regardless of your immigration status, you are children of god and welcomed in the catholic church. the catholic church supports you and will advocate for you. such a beautiful statement. as i noted earlier, tomorrow is the national prayer breakfast and many people who will be gathered there, among those who have been so supportive of our dreamers. and we thank them for their leadership and their courage. i don't know if these people will be there tomorrow but members of their churches.
and a reverend will have spoken out as a leader in the evangelical community. i wanted to -- hopefully tomorrow as they pray and come together, they will be speaking about what we see from the pulpit, from the bishops and evangelical community, if you god's that we are all creation, as i do, as people of faith do, and i do believe faith is a gift that everyone doesn't have. so you may not have that same perspective, but if you do believe and i believe everyone gathered tomorrow will believe nd many people our country acribe to in god we trust, then
you must believe in the bible. to minister to god's creation is an act of worship, to ignore those needs are to dishonor the god who made us. this is in the scripture in the gospel of matthew. when we are thinking about this subject, we also have to recognize the diversity in our dreamer population. in 2012, luke was 11 years old. his family brought him to the united states from south korea. the senator has left us, but he inspires us, senator durbin, he inspires us so much and such a great leader on this subject. because you know what? it's from the heart and right thing to do. but with great intellect, have a vision and a dream, but an intellect for a plan to get the job done. clear path.
it exists in the senate. we don't know why that door is shut to us in the house. we call upon the speaker to open the same door in the house to discussion that is in the senate. once again mend senator durbin for his extraordinary, extraordinary leadership. dreamers know him. they know him. 20 2002, luke came to the united states from south korea. he grew up in new jersey. here's what luke said about growing up. it didn't take long for me to adjust and assimilate because my school offered classes in korean and english. this is the america i have known and experienced, not just mundanely accepting diversity but going above and beyond to serve the needs of a diverse community. he had a passion of science. e was accepted into bergen
county academy as one of the top five public high schools in the country. luke won several awards at science fairs and volunteered as emergency medical technician in the local ambulance corps. because of his academic accomplishments he was accepted at the city college of new york. in 2013, luke gauted, are you inspect laude. he is a graduate in chemistry at the university of chicago. he works as a researcher at the university in his spare time, how does he have spare time? he also works as a researcher
and volunteers with the chicago korean cultural center and organization that provides services to disadvantaged members. good for you, luke. consider this, without legal status, luke's talents would have been squandered, but now thanks to daca, when we had daca, luke was on the road for making his childhood passion into a promising career as a scientist. he has written much more shielding me from deportation and changing my immediate circumstances and brought out a new me to reject fear. daca has been tremendously empowering. wrever i pride myself in the future, i hope to mentor and encourage and empower others. luke and other dreamers have so much to contribute to our country. do we need more talented science
activities like luke? of course, we do. will america be strong if we deport him? the answer should be obvious. thank you, luke. her parents broughter to to the united states from the philippines when she was 5 years old she grew up in california, she was an excellent student who dreeped of becoming a doctor. she was on the principal's honor roll and an a.p. scholar. she relieved a -- received a governor's scholar award. she was admitted to the university of california-los angeles, one of the nation's top universities. congresswoman waters would attest to that. uclaing one of the nation's top universities. we all are proud of the u.c. system. ucla, she volunteers as a research assistant in lab
studies -- an studies infants at high risk of developing autism she also volunteers as a crisis counselor at the ucla peer hepline, advising student whors victims of rape, child abuse and substance abuse. she game a trainer for new counselors. she also volunteered as a mentor and tutor for at-risk children in los angeles. she graduates from ucla with a degree in psychology. but her options were limited buzz of her immigration status. she was unable to pursue her dream of becoming a . then in 2012, president obama established the daca program and her world changed. she began working as a research assistant at ucla school of medicine and applied to attend medical school. during her spare time, she continues to volunteer with the awe tusm research lab where she started her research career seven years ago. she also serves as peer mentor
to 10 undergraduate students at ucla. he wrote to congress these words -- please, please listen to our stories. this is my home, the only kun aren't -- country i know. daca gives us greater opportunity to give become to the country we love. listen to that sentence again, my colleagues. mr. speaker. she wrote, daca gives us greater opportunities to give back to the only country we love. that is what the dreamers are about. the dream is to give back to america. they have benefited from our country, want to give back, and the courage and optimism and fortitude that they have is really a blessing. she and other dreamers have so much to contribute. will america be stronger if we deport her and others like her? will we be a better country if
we tear apart american families? of course not. this is going to be a hard name for me to pronounce. his parents brought him to the united states from thailand when he was 9 years old. he grew up in san francisco. i read mystery novels to force myself to expand my vocabulary. i police mo nounsed words in the face of ridicule until i mastered the english lang wam. he became an excellent student and dreamed of becoming a dr. he worked 30 hours a week at his family's thai restaurant. here's what he said about the
experience. i spent most of my time at the restaurant working as a waiter, cashier and chef. scrubbing toilets, washing dishes and mopping floors. it taught me to have faith, work hard and persevere. his hard work paid off he graduated as a salutatorian of his high school clats with a 4.3 grade point average. he was admitted to the university of california berkley, one of the top schools in california, in the nation. he won a scholarship that would have covered most of his tuition but was unable to accept it because of his immigration status. despite the setback, he persevered. in may, 2012, he graduated with honors with a 3.7 grade point average and a major in molecular and cellular biology. can you do that? one month after he graduated, president obamaest tablied the daca program. the result of daca, he was able to pursue his dream of becoming
a doctor. last fall he began medical school at university of california-san francisco. he volunteers at a homeless clinic run by this students of university of california-san francisco he started a network of dreamers pursuing careers in health care. he and other dreamers like him have so much to contribute to our country. will america be a stronger country if we deport him and others like him? will we be a better country if we tear apart american families? of course not. iame sayed on that was brought to the united states when she was young. she writes, i have no memories of living anywhere but the united states. i'm an american in every way
except on paper. she graduated in the top 10% of her high school class where she was secretary of the spanish club. she's from pakistan. she was secretary of the spanish club. secretary of the math team. and a member of the national honors society of high school scholars. her dream is to become a physician. here's how she explains it. it break misheart to see thousands of children tie of diseases badu to inadequate facilities, i want to be the skills and abilities to change that. she graduated from rutgers university, magna couple laud, s on the dean's list six times. she was a research assistant at rutgers department of psychology and intern salespersonned with a local cardiology practice. she took the medical college admission test and scored in the
90th percentile. better than 90% of those who took the test. shortly after she graduated, president obama announced the daca program. because of daca, she's now a medical student at loyola university, pursuing her dream of becoming a physician. and after she graduates she'll work in a medically underserved area. of illinois. here's what she said ability the daca impact on her. i went from feeling hopeless and full of uncertainty regarding my ture, i'm feeling optimistic that one day i'll get to help my community and people in over poverty-stricken areas. if the house republicans have their way, she won't be able to attend medical school and become a doctor. instead she'll be sent back to pakistan a country she hasn't lived in since she was a toddler.
i think that plenty of republicans are on board to help our dreamers. that's what i'm hopeful about. just we need to be given the chance to have a respectful vote on all sides of the issue which we have bipartisan, democrat strong but strong republican support as well. give us a vote, mr. speaker. give us a chance. treat this house with the dignity it deserves so we can represent the people and the rushes tissue and the wishes of our country. will america be stronger if we deport aima? of course not. day i want to tell you about al, whose born in nigeria. his father was killed by nigerian police after he wrote a newspaper column criticizing the nigerian government.
the killing of al's father was documented in the state department's report. al's mother fled nigeria and brought him to the united states, he was only 5 years old. al's mother applied for asylum but her application was denied and she was deport when al was 15. her husband had been assassinated for articles he had written a well-founded fear of persecution or danger in nigeria, and yet her application was denied in 2005. al was 15. he graduated from rogers high school, near tacoma, washington he attended central washington university where he was an honors student with a 3.5 grade point average. he was an active volunteer in his community. here's what al said about his goals for the future. and i quote al, very proudly. i've been in accelerated
academic program most of my educational life and hope to be a medical doctor to contribute to the well being of my fellow humans. i hope to continue to emulate and work in the great academic shoes of my late father, who earned a ph.d. degree from the university of paris, france. my family and community support has been enormous and it gives me the zeal to work hard in my studies and to lend a hand to others in need and realize a bright future. al grew up in this country. we have already invested in al who received his entire education from kippeder garten to college, in the united states. -- he has great potential to contribute to our society. he does not remember anything about nigeria and cannot speak any of nigh year's native language. here's what he said about the possibility of being deported. i do not remember anything about my mother's country of nigeria, i can't even speak the language. every experience i have had in
life that i can remember is in the united states of america. everyone i know and care about are all here except my mother who was stadly removed and remains in hiding and fear. but america -- would america be stronger if al were deported? of course not. and he's not aniteslated example. there are literally thousands of other, hundreds of thousands of others, like him around the country. thank you, al for being so generous and sharing your story. i want to tell you about n; ovi roy who grew up in the state of illinois. novi was brought to the united states from india as a child he township high on ms. -- isn't that
schakowsky's district? no, our senator, jurgen. he began volunteering at a soup kitchen in chicago which rehe continues to do today. novi went to university of illinois at urbana, champaign, where he graduated with a bachelor's degree in economics. he graduated from u. of i. with two masters degrees, one in business and one in human resources. nv sks -- novi's dream is to help provide affordable health care to those less fortunate. here's what he said in a letter he wrote to dick durbin he said, i love america for all its opportunities and tippett chance to revitalize, realize an american dream. i owe the state of illinois, its taxpayers, and america a huge debt of gratitude for the level of education i have attained thus far. i'm confident my education will serve me well enough to make a difference in people's lives and there's nothing i would like
more than to give back to the community that has been so good to me. novi grew up in this country, we've already invested in him and he has obtained a first class education in illinois. he has great potential to contribute to our society. would america be a stronger nation if he was deported? of course not. he's overcome the odds to achieve great success. he would make america a stronger country. , he came 's story from india as a child. a large number of asian-pacific americans, dreamers. this is yaniz. he was brought to his the united states by his parents from israel when he was three years old. a dreamer from israel. he grew up in this country. like other american children -- he grew up in this country like any other american child.
in 2010 he graduated from richard stockton college of new jersey with a bachelor's degree in hospitality and tourism management. in college he was chair of the jewish student qune, was an active volunteer with several other student groups. his dream is to open a restaurant he wrote a letter and said, i fell in love with cooking in high school when i took a home economics class and knew this is what i wanted to do for the rest of my life. i would love to give back to america by opening my own restaurant, creating jobs, contributing to the economy, and becoming a citizen of the country i love. unfortunately, under our immigration law he cannot become a citizen. his father was born in the was bornates but yanid in israel. so he's not a citizen. his father applied for him to