New York is a city of immigrants, and CUNY is their university. In fact, immigrants make up 41% of CUNY’s student body. They deserve the chance at a better life that CUNY has to offer, regardless of their immigration status. That's why PSC supports the NYS Dream Act, which grants access to financial aid, opportunity programs, student loans and New York’s 529 college savings program for qualifying undocumented immigrant young adults.
NYS DREAM Act Fails in the Senate
The NYS Dream Act came up for a surprise vote the evening of March 17. With 32 votes needed to pass the bill, thirty senators voted for it and twenty-nine voted against it. In a statement released to the media by the Dream Act Coalition, President Bowen said:
“New York State had a chance to make history today, to show that we are still this country’s great gateway for generations of immigrants. But the Senate Republicans made sure that didn’t happen. Their vote against the DREAM Act denied thousands of students the opportunity to afford a college education and make their full contribution to the future of this state. As professors and staff at CUNY, we know that these brave students are among the most conscientious we will ever teach. It is a travesty to deny them a meaningful chance for an education. I am ashamed that the Senate Republicans made the Statue of Liberty turn her back on New York Harbor.”
Take Actions to Help Pass the Dream Act
Things in Albany are happening fast, and the NYS Dream Act’s chances of passing this year could live or die based on votes that could happen in the next week or two. There are many moving parts, and the politics are complicated and at least partially entwined with the budget negotiations. We know this: The Assembly passed the NYS DREAM Act in February. Governor Cuomo has said he will sign the NYS DREAM act if the Senate passes it. A vote in the Senate could happen as early as this week.
Here’s how you can help:
- Send this e-letter to your senator, Governor Cuomo, Senators Klein and Skelos.
- Ask Governor Cuomo to add the NYS DREAM Act to the budget with this e-letter.
Calls & texts:
- Text DREAM to 877877; you will be prompted to text your information and will then get a call connecting you to your senator.
- Call (888) 833-7428 to be connected to any state legislator through the switchboard.
On social media, tweet and share the following:
- Text DREAM to 877877 to contact your senator to make the #NYDREAMAct a reality!
- Send an e-letter to your senator & let them know that you support the #NYDREAMAct and so should they! http://www.cccnewyork.org/NYSDreamAct
- @JeffKleinNY @SenatorSkelos Put #NYDREAMAct in the Senate One-House Budget Resolution and ensure its final passage in the NYS Budget!
- @JeffKleinNY @SenatorSkelos We are less than 20 days away from the #NYSBudget. Please include the #NYDREAMAct in it.
- Education leads to better-paying jobs, putting #NYDREAMAct in the #NYSbudget would benefit the State by providing higher tax payments. @NYSComptroller
Editorial Board Support for NYS DREAM Act
Send an Email Right Now; Tell Albany to Pass the NYS DREAM Act.
President Barbara Bowen joined State Senator Bill Perkins Friday, March 7 at a news conference announcing the Senator’s support of the NYS DREAM act (photo). Senator Perkins joins the majority of State assembly members and most Democrats in in the State Senate in backing the legislation, which would extend state financial aid to undocumented students who were brought to New York before age 16 and have graduated from a New York high school or high school equivalency program. The Assembly has already passed the NYS DREAM Act and will include it in the houses’ budget proposal, due to be release this week. Dream Activists are urging the Senate to do the same. You can help by clicking this link and sending an email to your Albany legislators. Governor Cuomo has said he will sign the NYS DREAM act if the Senate passes it.