The United States bishops are calling on Congress to vote in favor of the DREAM Act.
The DREAM Act would provide young people, who were brought by their parents to the United States at an early age and have undocumented status, a way to regularize their status and obtain permanent residency. It also would allow states to give them eligibility for in-state tuition.
In a Sept. 19 statement, Bishop Thomas Wenski of Orlando urged elected officials to “resist the voices of dissension and fear this time and vote for the DREAM Act.”
”As a provider of education to thousands of children and young adults nationwide, the Catholic Church has witnessed the suffering of young persons who, through no fault of their own, reside in an undocumented status and are denied access to legal status in this country and an opportunity to continue their education,” said Bishop Wenski, a consultant to the bishops’ Committee on Migration.
The DREAM Act, he said, would give these young people an opportunity to meet their potential and to fully contribute to our society.
“This is not only good for them but good for our country,” he added. “By investing in these young people, our nation will receive the benefits for years to come. It is also the right and moral thing to do.”
“These children are in an undocumented status not because their own choice or decision [but because] … they were dependent on their parents,” said the bishop in his appeal. “The United States is the only country and home many of them know.”