On Tuesday May 1, while thousands marched across the country for worker rights, especially immigrant worker rights, the New York State Assembly decided not to invest in the education of undocumented youth. The New York State legislature passed the New York State Dream Fund, which would set up up a commission to raise private scholarships for undocumented students. A.8689B is hardly a DREAM come true. The fund will make family tuition accounts available to anyone who provides a valid taxpayer identification number. These accounts allow for systematic savings coming out of the pocket of immigrant families who already pay millions of dollars in taxes and reap little benefit from the state they live in. The New York State Dream Fund doesn’t take a cent from the state. In other words, the state told undocumented youth who want to go to college, we hope your families, who statistically earn less than others, can put something aside for you. If not – oh well.
What local undocumented youth and allies are fighting for is The New York State Dream Act. The NYS DREAM Act would have extended state- sponsored financial aid to all students, regardless of citizenship status. Through this act, all students would have been given an equal opportunity to financial assistance, specifically the Tuition Assistance Program (TAP).
For information on how you can help continue the push for equal access to state education funds for undocumented youth see after the jump.
The NY Dream Act is currently being held in the Governmental Operations Committee in the Assembly. Please call the Assembly Speaker Sheldon Silver and ask him to put up the NY Dream Act (A6829/S4179) for a vote in the Assembly, then call the Chair of the Governmental Operations committee and ask him to move the NY DREAM Act through the committee, see the numbers below.
Sample script: “I’m calling to urge that (legislators name) support the NY DREAM Act and allow undocumentedstudents to be given an equal opportunity to the tuition assistance program, please move the NY DREAM Act to the floor for a vote ”
Assembly Speaker Sheldon Silver
NYC office: 212-312-1420 / Albany: 518-455-3791
Chair, Governmental Operations Committee
Albany: 518-455-4804 / District office: 631-751-3094
If you have more time please call every member of the committee, see list here.
Sources : http://www.nysylc.org/