Rep. Pramila Jayapal Joins DACA Mom, Experts, and Allies to Discuss the Imminent Risks to Parents with DACA and their U.S. Citizen Children and Call for a Clean Dream Act

October 12, 2017

Juan Gastelum, 213-375-3149
Hayley Burgess, 202-384-1279

WASHINGTON — U.S. Rep. Pramila Jayapal (WA-07) today joined Martha Ruiz, a mother of three and DACA recipient from Colorado; Roberto Suro, director of the Tomás Rivera Policy Institute at the University of Southern California; Mayor Marilyn Strickland of Tacoma, Washington; Arizona State Rep. Isela Blanc (LD26); and Marielena Hincapié, executive director of the National Immigration Law Center, to discuss the potential economic and wellness impacts to parents with DACA and their kids unless Congress moves swiftly to pass a clean Dream Act.

More than 25 percent of DACA recipients are parents, according to a recent survey conducted by UC San Diego professor Tom Wong, the National Immigration Law Center, United We Dream, and the Center for American Progress.

An audio recording of today’s call is available at

Martha Ruiz, Colorado mother of three and DACA recipient
“After DACA ended, we had an emergency meeting with the kids. It was to explain what could happen if either my husband or I were taken away. Children shouldn’t have to worry about being separated from their parents. I know no other home. This is my kids’ home. Our family home. We need protection. We need a clean Dream Act, and we need it quickly.”

Marielena Hincapié, Executive Director of the National Immigration Law Center
“Many young people with DACA are parents, the majority to U.S. citizen kids. These children should be entitled to the same rights and opportunities as any other child. Unfortunately, unless Congress acts now, their futures may be put in jeopardy. Each day, these children are pushed further and further into limbo. We need a clean Dream Act now.”

Roberto Suro, Professor and Director of the Tomás River Policy Institute at University of Southern California
“A growing body of research on the children of unauthorized immigrants shows the negative effects of growing up with the anxiety and insecurity associated with their parents’ immigration status. That same research shows that measures like DACA can reverse these negative effects. It’s time we start looking at these young people as the parents of U.S. citizens who are doing essential work for society as a whole.”

U.S. Rep. Pramila Jayapal (WA-07), Co-Chair of Congressional Women’s Working Group on Immigration Reform
“President Trump’s immigration wish list is a white supremacist’s dream. At a time when the future of 800,000 DACA recipients hangs in the balance, it is unacceptable for the president to bring forth restrictionist rhetoric that sets us back decades. Many women are stuck in the visa backlogs, waiting years and even decades to be reunited with their families. No one would suffer more under Trump’s immigration principles than women and families.”

Arizona State Rep. Isela Blanc (LD26)
“In 1986, Ronald Reagan signed an immigration bill improving the lives of 3 million immigrants. It brought us out of the shadows to fully participate in the American Dream. Republicans must put partisan politics aside to address the future of 11 million undocumented immigrants.”

Mayor Marilyn Strickland, City of Tacoma, Washington
“We local leaders must implore Congress to pass a clean DREAM Act. Not doing so puts families in jeopardy, particularly women and children. Dreamers are faith leaders, business owners, and serve as other vital members of our community. We rely on them and they deserve our protection.”