DENVER – After being left in the Organizing For America Campaign office overnight, members of the Campaign for the American DREAM (CAD) and Colorado Organize, Resist, Escalate (COORE) will remain there to push for an executive order to stop deportations of DREAM Act-eligible youth. At the time of this release, they have remained in the office for 15 hours. If OFA does not respond by 5PM specifically on the executive order, the protesters will escalate their peaceful protest in Denver and more actions will follow across the country. There will be a press conference outside the OFA office at 5PM (77 W 9th Avenue, Denver, CO 80204).
The national Organizing for America office in Chicago released a statement in response to the action, focusing the blame on the Republicans. It ignored our call for an executive order. ”Only the Latino vote will send Republicans the clear message that they must stop playing politics with immigration and join the President to advance sensible immigration proposals such as the DREAM Act,” the statement read.
We are not interested in Democratic political games, either. The National Immigrant Youth Alliance is supporting the action with a petition urging the president to issue an executive order. At the time of writing, over 7000 signatures have been gathered. We understand that congressional gridlock takes options like the DREAM Act off the table, but we will not except inaction when nothing stops the president from issuing an executive order to stop us from getting deported.
“With Deportations on the rise and Secure Communities recently implemented in the state of Colorado, We cannot just sit back and wait!” said Veronica Gomez, an undocumented member of CAD and one of the students who stayed in the office overnight. “The immigrant community in Colorado needs to know that we have a voice in this country, that we are not criminals, and we deserve a pathway to legalization.”
“If they want the Latino vote in Colorado, they must show the community what they are doing for us. We are asking them to stop the deportation of all DREAM eligible youth!” said Javier Hernandez, an undocumented immigrant living in Colorado and member of COORE.
Despite the memo authored by Immigration and Customs Enforcement Director John Morton explaining that ICE is supposed to focus its resources on deporting criminals, DREAM-eligible youth are being put in deportation proceedings nationwide. We need the strength of an executive order to stop our deportations.
The National Immigrant Youth Alliance is an undocumented youth-led network committed to achieving equality for all undocumented youth. We have member organizations in Alabama, California, Colorado, D.C., Florida, Georgia, Hawaii, Illinois, Kentucky, Louisiana, Michigan, New York, North Carolina, Ohio, Oregon, Pennsylvania, Virginia, and Washington and have relationships with activists throughout the entire country. We are the only independent national organization of undocumented youth. Through advocacy, grassroots organizing, direct action and civil disobedience, we will develop a sustainable movement or justice and equality led by those most affected and supported by committed, conscientious allies.