Lobbying group launches DACA Renewals Now - Brownsville Herald: Valley

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Lobbying group launches DACA Renewals Now

Long-term campaign aims to encourage donations, raise awareness

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Posted: Monday, July 8, 2019 11:20 am

The lobbying group FWD.us has launched DACA Renewals Now, a long-term educational campaign and resource drive to support the more than 700,000 Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals recipients who are affected by changes to the DACA program. FWD.us is a 501(c)(4) lobbying group based in Washington, D.C., and San Francisco that advocates for prison reform, amnesty for undocumented immigrants, particularly for DACA recipients, and higher levels of immigration visas, particularly for H-1B visas for foreign workers in STEM fields.

The initiative is primarily supported and funded by Silicon Valley technology companies and led by principal Facebook founder Mark Zuckerberg. Its founding president was Joe Green, a close friend and confidant of Zuckerberg. The group aims to build a bipartisan consensus around its proposed policies. However, it has garnered criticism for its connections to large technology companies, its support of the Keystone XL pipeline, and what critics have described as its “questionable lobbying practices,” according to Wikipedia.

FWD.us said DACA Renewals Now will continue through this year, and will help encourage and facilitate DACA renewals for Dreamers by driving donations to organizations working around renewals, raising public awareness, and partnering with organizations to offer other related services, such as renewal clinics. The FWD.us Education Fund will adapt the campaign as needed pending the results of ongoing DACA-related litigation.

The Supreme Court said last Friday it will decide whether President Donald Trump can terminate DACA. The court’s order sets up legal arguments for late fall or early winter, with a decision likely by June 2020 as Trump campaigns for reelection. The president ordered an end to DACA in 2017, sparking protests and a congressional effort to salvage it..

On its website FWD.us contends that by petitioning for a writ of certiorari on three principal DACA cases before the Court, the Trump administration’s “ultimate goal is to end the DACA program once and for all.”

“In a time of uncertainty and chaos for Dreamers and their families, the DACA Renewals Now Campaign will provide vital educational resources and funding to help provide a little more peaceofmindtoDreamers and the millions of Americans who stand with them,” said Katie Aragón, Informed Immigrant program director at the FWD. us Education Fund. “The funds raised will help power DACA renewals for Dreamers across the country, allowing them to continue contributing to the only country most have known as home.”

The campaign will be housed under Informed Immigrant, a resourcesharing platform and initiative for the immigrant community. DACA Renewals Now aims to provide helpful information on the renewal process and real-time updates around legal developments impacting DACA renewals to DACA recipients and those close to them. The campaign will also provide support to organizations working on the ground to provide renewal legal assistance and fee scholarships to DACA recipients around the country; DACA renewals cost $495 per individual renewal.

“The opportunity to renew my work authorization will help offer my life financial security and the means to continue working within my field of passion,” said Eriko Tsogo, a DACA recipient and Mongolian-American artist, who was able to renew his work permit with the help of DACA Renewals Now partner the Colorado Immigrant Rights Coalition (CIRC). “I am an artist and a Dreamer who seeks to be an active member of my community and give back to my country as much as America has given to me.”

To kick off the campaign, the FWD.us Education Fund has pledged up to $2,500 in matching donations for each of eight partners supporting DACA renewals in the field, as well as an additional $5,000 in matching donations for the GoFundMe Protect DACA Fund. The nonprofit organizations to receive matching donations include:

➤ GoFundMe Protect DACA Fund

➤ Americans for Immigrant Justice (AIJ)

➤ Coalition for Human Immigrant and Refugee Rights of Los Angeles (CHIRLA) ➤ Cabrini Immigrant Services of NYC

➤ Colorado Immigrant Rights Coalition (CIRC)

➤ Dream Action Oklahoma (DAOK)

➤ Latino Community Fund of Georgia (LCF)

➤ National Immigrant Justice Center (NIJC) Key Links for the DACA Renewals Now Campaign: The DACA Renewals Guide can be found here. https://www.informedimmigrant. com/guides/dacarenewals- 2019/ Donations to the DACA Renewals Now partner organizations can be made here.

“LCF Georgia is committed to supporting DACA renewals as it allows some members of our hardworking community to continue to work, drive, increase access to opportunities for post temporary education and effectively provides relief from deportation,” added Gilda Pedraza, Executive Director at the Latino Community Fund of Georgia.

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