Policy

CTA Presses Congress to Find Way to Legalize 'Dreamers'

Group calls DACA integral to tech economy 9/13/2017 10:42 AM Eastern
Protesters demonstrated in New York after Donald Trump rescinded the Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA) program.
Photo by Spencer Platt/Getty Images
TakeAway

"Immigration doesn't break us as a nation -- it strengthens us." --CTA president Gary Shapiro

With the tech industry relying on expertise imported from other countries and the highly skilled innovators that immigrate to the U.S. for the opportunity to turn their dreams into reality, and dollars, the Consumer Technology Association is pressing Congress to fix the system.

That means finding a way for 'Dreamers' to stay in the country. Dreamers, or DREAMers (from the Development, Relief and Education for Alien Minors (DREAM) Act bills that have so far failed to pass) are immigrants who are children of illegal/undocumented residents.

"Imagine if we had turned away half of Silicon Valley's immigrant entrepreneurs," said CTA president Gary Shapiro. "We wouldn't have many of the innovations we enjoy today or the 44 immigrant-founded billion-dollar startups that employ hundreds of thousands of Americans."

Shapiro's remarks came in advance of a Senate Judiciary Committee hearing with a mouthful of a title: "The Long-term Impact of Immigration: Exploring Reforms to our Nation's Guest Worker Programs and Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA), and their Potential Impact on the American Economy and Local Communities."

President Donald Trump hass rescinded the DACA program, but gave Congress six months to figure out a legislative solution that does not punish the children of illegal immigrants for the actions of their parents.

"If Congress doesn't find a permanent solution for DACA recipients, we can say goodbye to the millions of dollars Dreamers contribute to the American economy," Shapiro said. "Immigration doesn't break us as a nation -- it strengthens us."

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