“The teenage girl peers into the camera, ready to divulge a secret,” Beth Fouhy reports for Yahoo News. “‘All my siblings are documented except me,’ says the girl, identified onscreen as Cendy. ‘I know I have a lot of potential but that I might not get there because my status will hold me back.’ Cendy is one of millions of immigrants who were brought illegally to the U.S. as children—a group known as ‘DREAMers’ by advocates of the Dream Act, a federal bill first introduced in the Senate in 2001 to allow them a pathway to permanent residency. To push for passage of the provisions in the Dream Act, Cendy and others agreed to share their stories on www.thedreamisnow.org, a website launched Tuesday by filmmaker Davis Guggenheim (‘Waiting for Superman’ and ‘An Inconvenient Truth’ ) and philanthropist Laurene Powell Jobs, the widow of Apple founder Steve Jobs.”

“The project allows young undocumented immigrants to submit videos describing how their lives would change if the Dream Act were passed. Others can also submit posts, including teachers, relatives and friends of the young immigrants, as well as those involved in developing policy around immigration,” Fouhy reports. “Immigration reform looms large as a legislative priority for President Barack Obama and for Republicans hoping to improve the party’s status among Hispanic voters.”

Fouhy reports, “Powell Jobs told Yahoo News the new project was an effort to harness the momentum around the issue and give visibility to the young people who would benefit from the Dream Act. ‘There needed to be a demystification—to put a face to these people, to hear the individual stories,’ Powell Jobs said in one of the few interviews she has granted since Steve Jobs’ death in 2011… The Dream Act would legalize young people under the age of 30 who entered the U.S. before they were 15 and have lived in the country continuously for five years. To earn legal status and eventually a path to citizenship, applicants would have to prove they have no criminal record and either enlist in the military or attend at least two years of college. (Some versions of the bill would require only a high-school degree for the legal status.)”

“The Dream Act has been supported by both Republicans and Democrats since its introduction even as the two parties have been sharply divided over other aspects of immigration reform. But the bill has never been enacted—the closest it came was in December 2010, when it passed the House but fell 5 votes short in the Senate of the 60 needed to avert a filibuster,” Fouhy reports. “Florida Sen. Marco Rubio, the son of Cuban immigrants and a GOP rising star, has indicated he will introduce some immigration reform measures that could include expedited legal status for young undocumented immigrants. But Rubio’s earlier proposal to legalize DREAMers did not include a path to citizenship, making it a nonstarter for most immigration rights activists. Powell Jobs said Rubio’s latest discussion of granting expedited status to young immigrants seemed ‘reasonable and principled,’ but that she wanted to learn more. ‘The key is to see the legislation once it’s written,’ she said.”

Read more in the full article here.

[Thanks to MacDailyNews readers too numerous to mention individually for the heads up.]

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