[On May 28, the Des Moines Register published this opinion piece by Grinnell College President Raynard Kington, MD, PhD. Sandra Sanchez, who directs AFSC Iowa's Immigrants Voice Program, wrote this open letter thanking Dr. Kington for his strong stand.]
Advocates for comprehensive immigration reform met with U.S. Rep. Tom Latham and staff at his Des Moines office on May 10, 2013. Hector Salamanca, AFSC Latino Youth Organizer, set up the meeting, and Sandra Sanchez, AFSC Iowa Immigrants Voice Program Director, facilitated a follow-up discussion.
By Hector Salamanca, AFSC Iowa Latino Youth Organizer Intern
I went to a recent town hall meeting in Boone, Iowa for a reason, and that was to ask Senator Chuck Grassley what his views were on the current Immigration bill. I was completely unprepared for what awaited me at the town hall and whether or not it was going to be a tough crowd or a supportive crowd that cared about immigration reform.
Dreamers and allies won a big victory with the Drivers Licenses this winter, but our work is still not done.
Now our sights are on Humane Immigration Reform and we ask you to join us on May 2 from 3:15 p.m.-4:15 p.m at City Hall, Second Floor Auditorium, 923 8th Street in Boone. We will be sending a clear message to Senator Grassley that we do not appreciate his recent comments over the immigration bill. So please join us and continue marching towards humane immigration reform.
With help from AFSC, a group of Iowa Dream Activists call for and win driver's licenses. This January 21, 2013 clip is from KCCI TV in Des Moines, and includes footage of interviews with young people who are being denied drivers' licenses because of their immigration status. The activists were protesting outside of the Iowa Department of Transportation because the DOT was refusing to issue licenses.
Iowa DREAMers visited the state capitol on March 20 to thank state senators for co-sponsoring a bill allowing them to pay in-state tuition at state universities. They also spoke with legislators still opposed to bill or on the fence. See more photos.
In June 2012, President Obama announced that immigrant youth who meet certain qualifications can apply for work permits through a program known as Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA). Though this is a step in the right direction, more change is needed to create a just immigration system for young people.
AFSC is a Quaker organization devoted to service, development, and peace programs throughout the world. Our work is based on the belief in the worth of every person, and faith in the power of love to overcome violence and injustice. Learn more
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