Home is Here: Stand by DREAMers in New York City

November 26, 2019

Click here to support the VOLS Immigration ProjectTen years ago in January 2010, four student activists began a 1500-mile journey from Miami to Washington, DC, wearing white t-shirts marked with the word “Undocumented.”

Later that May, five students dressed in caps and gowns to stage a sit-in at the late Senator John McCain’s Tuscon office, declaring their undocumented status and supporting the DREAM Act. Then in July, New York DREAMers went on a hunger strike for 10 days to press Senator Charles Schumer to support stand-alone DREAM legislation.

By December, the DREAM Act became the centerpiece of Congress’ lame-duck session agenda. Although legislation never passed, the movement led by these brave young people secured action by President Obama to implement the DACA program, or Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals. 

 

The VOLS Immigration Project was launched in response to the DREAM movement, but today DACA is in jeopardy. 

For ten years, our team of staff and pro bono attorneys has resolved immigration issues for New York City’s high school students, so that they can work, attend college, and have an opportunity to achieve the American Dream. But soon, 700,000 young people might lose their only protection from deportation as the Supreme Court weighs in. 

 

Join VOLS’ emergency response. 

VOLS is launching an emergency rapid response plan to identify DACA recipients who have work authorizations expiring in 2020 and to submit their early renewals to U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services. This month, we collaborated with the Consulate General of Mexico in New York to host a workshop on DACA and to update young people on the Supreme Court’s recent oral arguments. In the coming weeks, we are partnering up with Simpson Thacher (January 9th) and Skadden Arps (January 14th) to host free DACA legal clinics in New York City. Click here to make a donation to the VOLS Immigration Project.

 

Your year-end donation supports VOLS' 
emergency response plan for DACA-mented New Yorkers.
Here are several ways that you can give:

 

 

 

VOLS stands by New York’s DREAMers. 

I am proud to share a detailed report by Jenifer Guzman, VOLS’ Community Advocate, who joined thousands of DACA recipients and allies at the “Home is Here” rally in Washington DC, outside the United States Supreme Court during the November 12 hearing to review the Trump Administration’s 2017 action to end DACA:

 

"From the marching from New York to Washington, DC, to the inspiring rally outside SCOTUS, it is clear that DREAMers will continue to work and fight to secure the futures of their community. Because for them, Home is Here.

"It was an honor for me to be among the crowd, as we uplifted each other’s spirits and as the fight for citizenship for all continues. At the moment, no one can predict what the court's final decision will be. The best way to prepare is to be ready for all possible outcomes."

 

Click here to read Jenifer’s full report on Medium, including testimonials by DACA recipients and analysis of the broader immigrant rights movement, here in New York City and across the country.

 

Thank you for your standing by New York City's immigrant youth.

 

Sincerely,

Sin Yen Ling
Director, Immigration Project
Volunteers of Legal Service

 

About VOLS’ Year-End Campaign  

35 years ago, VOLS was formed by leaders of New York City’s Bar Association in response to severe federal budget cuts to legal services in underserved communities. Today, VOLS provides free, civil legal services when and where they are needed most. Our public interest team works alongside over 1,000 volunteer attorneys from law firms and corporate law departments, in collaboration with 210 community-based organizations.

Between today and year-end 2019, VOLS will be sharing the work of our six legal projects and initiatives, and we need your support.