Sacramento, CA – The Service Employees International Union (SEIU) California released the following statement from Josemelli Ruiz, a DACA recipient and Community Leader with SEIU-United Healthcare Workers West (SEIU-UHW), on the introduction of federal bill H.R. 6 that creates a path to citizenship for young immigrants under the Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals program, and people with Temporary Protected Status (TPS):
“Today is a significant step in keeping our promise to immigrant brothers and sisters who have contributed to communities across California and the United States, and devoted their livelihoods to making our schools, workplaces and neighborhoods stronger and better places for all of us. We must ensure each of these individuals have the right and protection to live safely in the places they call home, especially under the Trump Administration that is determined to separate families and attack immigrant workers.
“This includes workers and people like me. I came to the United States from Zacatecas, Mexico when I was just 1 year old with my parents. They hoped to give me a better life in the Central Valley, and now I’m eager to become a counselor to help young people in my community pursue educational paths, even as I often worry that my own educational dreams may be suddenly ripped away when the DACA program ends.
“We are grateful for the leadership of our California representatives who are sponsoring this bill, including Rep. Lucille Roybal-Allard and Speaker Nancy Pelosi. SEIU members are committed to working with our leaders and many partners to hold Congress accountable and seeing this solution passed for our fellow workers, family members and friends who need a pathway to citizenship.”