On Tuesday, June 4th, a landmark moment was made by the House of Representatives (under majority democratic vote 237-187). The American Dream and Promise Act of 2019 or H.R.6 bill to protect more than 2.5 million immigrants, was passed – it is a path to a permanent status not only to undocumented immigrants brought to the U.S. illegally as minors, known as Dreamers, but also to those living in the U.S. under the Temporary Protected Status (TPS) and Deferred Enforced Departure (DED) and/or DACA (Deferred Action Childhood Arrivals) programs. For TPS immigrants, most coming from El Salvador, Honduras and Haiti, many have come for reasons like armed conflict, natural disasters in their home countries and can stay in the U.S. until it becomes safe and clear to return to their home countries.

The House passing the American Dream and Promise Act came with an incredible ‘moment’, cheers and tears from Congress members who have been fighting long and hard for several years both prior and during the Trump administration for immigrant rights. This moment was a ‘middle finger’ to mostly the Trump administration which has been a force in resistance to immigrant rights. Dreamers, TPS and DED recipients were among the House chamber chanting “USA. USA. USA”.

Rep. Ocasio-Cortez added, ‘This is why we fight.”

As the Dream and Promise Act bill makes its uphill climb to Senate, here are a few things to consider:

– The Senate is majority-Republican ran and many already oppose the bill at House level – 187. Amendments to the bill attempted to paint Dreamers as criminals. However, none of the amendments to the bill passed.

– If the bill is to pass the Senate it is to come with provisions for improved border security and changes to immigration laws

So if the bill passes Senate then what? Dreamers would be granted 10 years of legal residence as long as they meet the outlined requirements. One being they must graduate from a U.S. college or technical school, complete two years of military service, or be employed for at least three years with 75% of that time under an authorized work visa.

Permanent green cards would then be attainable. For all three groups (Dreamers, TPS, DED)- eligible to apply for permanent legal status after a number of years of green card status holding.


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