WASHINGTON, D.C. – Today, Congresswoman Doris Matsui (CA-6) issued the following statement after voting for H.R. 6, the Dream and Promise Act of 2019. This historic legislation protects and creates a pathway to citizenship for Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA) recipients, individuals with Temporary Protected Status (TPS), and Deferred Enforced Departure (DED) beneficiaries. The Dream and Promise Act passed the House by a vote of 237-187. Congresswoman Matsui is an original co-sponsor of the Dream and Promise Act and has supported the Dream Act in previous Congresses.
“California is home to the largest population of Dreamers and individuals with Temporary Protected Status in the country. Alongside Deferred Enforced Departure (DED) beneficiaries, they are contributing members of our society. They are woven into the fabric of our communities and represent the very best of the United States – hard work, ambition, and hope,” said Congresswoman Matsui.
“Instead of embracing these upstanding citizens with open arms and a pathway to citizenship, the Trump Administration has chosen to upend their lives and place a cloud of doubt over their future. That is why we are stepping in and providing long-overdue certainty for DACA recipients, individuals with TPS, and DED beneficiaries. For many of these young men and women, the United States is the only country they have ever known, and they deserve a path to permanent residency status and eventual citizenship. I was proud to cast my vote in favor of the Dream and Promise Act, and I urge my Senate colleagues to swiftly take up this important legislation,” added Matsui.
In 2017, the Trump Administration upended protections for Dreamers by rescinding the DACA program. Although court injunctions have so far permitted Dreamers to renew their DACA status, no new enrollees may be accepted and the decision has cast their lives into frightening uncertainty. This bill would provide a pathway to citizenship for eligible Dreamers who entered the U.S. under the age of 18 and who were continuously present in the U.S. for 4 years prior to the date of the bill’s enactment. Dreamers would be provided conditional permanent resident status and would need to fulfill an education, employment, or military track to achieve permanent resident status.
In addition, the Dream and Promise Act would secure permanent residency for people with TPS and DED. After 5 years, those permanent residents would be eligible to apply to become citizens. On average, TPS recipients have lived in the United States for 20 years and have built new lives for themselves and their families. Similarly, DED recipients have lived in the United States and contributed to their communities since 2007.