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NEA Letter on Amendments to the Department of Homeland Security Appropriations Act, 2015 (H.R. 240)

January 13, 2015

Dear Representative:  

On behalf of the three million members of the National Education Association (NEA), and the students they serve, we are writing to you regarding two amendments to the Department of Homeland Security Appropriations Act, 2015 (H.R. 240). Votes associated with these amendments may be included in the NEA Report Card on the 114th Congress.  

As part of the appropriations bill for the Department of Homeland Security, amendments have been filed that, if passed, will have devastating impacts on our students, their families and communities. We urge you to VOTE NO on the following amendments:  

  • #1 by Reps. Aderholt (R-AL), Mulvaney (R-SC) and Barletta (R-PA) - This amendment would threaten family unity by preventing the expansion of the Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA) program and the extension of relief from deportation to certain undocumented parents of U.S. citizen and legal permanent resident children.
  • #2 by Rep. Blackburn (R-TN) – This amendment would prevent any funds, including fees, from being used to consider any new, renewal or previously denied DACA applications, essentially ending a program that has served to keep approximately 700,000 students and their families together.

President Obama’s recent announcement of executive action on immigration has the potential to bring five million aspiring Americans out from the shadows, many of whom were brought into the country through no fault of their own as children, and including the parents of children who are U.S. citizens. Keeping families together allows these aspiring Americans to add to the rich cultural tapestry of our country, contribute to our economy, and pursue the American dream.  

NEA strongly opposes any effort that undermines the President’s executive action on immigration. Fixing our broken immigration system is a top priority for educators because it has a profound impact on our students, their families, and communities. Educators witness firsthand the critical role family stability plays in student success. Yet, a growing number of students live in fear that our nation’s immigration policies will break up their families.

We urge you to VOTE NO on these amendments and work to see Congress pass a comprehensive bill that creates a pathway to citizenship for the more than 11 million aspiring Americans; continues to preserve the unity of family; and includes the DREAM Act and Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA). 

Sincerely, 

Mary Kusler
Director, Government Relations