Menendez Hosts Dream Relief Day
August 15 is First Day to Apply for Deferred Action Work Permits
August 15, 2012
WASHINGTON - Today, the first day eligible young people can apply to the U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services for work permits which would allow them to continue learning and working in the United States without fear of deportation, U.S. Senator Robert Menendez hosted a DREAM Relief Day information session at Union County College in Elizabeth for potential applicants and interested community members.
Menendez spoke about the importance this opportunity is for hundreds of thousands of young people who have grown up as Americans and who seek to contribute to our nation, saying: “I’ve been pushing for this day to become a reality for several years. The time has come to harness and develop the talent that all of our young people have to offer. The time has come to allow thousands of young men and women who are kept from enrolling at colleges and universities to finally achieve their full potential, ultimately being full participants in American life and full contributors to the American economy through their ingenuity, skills, and hard work. That’s what the DREAM Act has always been about, and today the process begins.”
During the session, participants heard the personal stories of two local DREAMERS: 17 year-old Selenne Galvez, originally from Puebla Mexico and a senior at Passaic High School, an honor student and cross country runner; and Marisol Conde-Hernandez, a well known DREAM advocate who is the Co-Founder and Professional Development Coordinator of the New Jersey DREAM Act Coalition, a Summa Cum Laude graduate of Rutgers, winner of the Dee Garrison Award for Peacekeeping and the Human Dignity Award both citing her activism on behalf of young, undocumented New Jerseyans.
Menendez announced the creation of two special webpages on his website – in English and Spanish – where interested individuals and organizations can download deferred action application forms as well as find comprehensive information about who is eligible and how to successfully complete the application forms. Those websites are: www.menendez.senate.gov/dreamrelief for English and www.menendez.senate.gov/dreamers for Spanish.
The session also included John Thompson, District Director of the US Citizenship and Immigration Services Newark office, who explained the details of the process. Attorney Mariam Habib from the Kids in Need of Defense Project at the American Friends Service Committee in Newark discussed immigration policy. Menendez worked with Mariam to bring young Gisselle Bonilla to the United States to provide bone marrow for her sister who was in desperate need of a transplant. Edwin Rubin and Robert Frank, two well respected immigration attorneys in Newark, provided legal insight and answered questions from participants.
Search Press Releases
Recent Press Releases
- 05/22 Resolution Introduced by Graham, Menendez Condemning Iran’s Pursuit of Nuclear Capability Passes Senate »
- 05/22 Senator Menendez Joins Governor Christie, Mayor Doherty To Open New Belmar Boardwalk »
- 05/22 Menendez Calls for Full Implementation of Iran Sanctions on Senate Floor »
- 05/21 Menendez Praises Judiciary Committee Vote in Favor of Immigration Reform Bill »