Mayor Emanuel Calls on Governor Rauner to Establish an Illinois Dreamer Bill of Rights
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Mayor Emanuel Calls on Governor Rauner to Establish an Illinois Dreamer Bill of Rights

October 19, 2019

I want to make a comment about Dreamers
and the actions not only today but in the past that the City of Chicago have
taken and also with the new resolution trying to align not just what cities
are doing but asking the state to join because I think we’re a more powerful
voice on behalf of dreamers. A lot of you know that Amy and I and the kids had
numerous Dreamers to our house for dinner that Cardinal Cupich joined us
at and if you listen to those kids and hear them, those Dreamers in my view are
upholding America’s promise and so Chicago will help them fulfill America’s
promise as dreamers. They are exactly what you would want out of your own
children and when we sat around the dinner table they talked about going to
college they talked about what they were dreaming of professionally, these kids
were brought by their parents here when they were young, they’ve embraced America
and all its values and we should be proud of them and we should do everything we
can to protect them and encourage them as we would our own children and I say
that because here while Chicago has many Dreamers and in fact at the Solario
school yesterday a number of children have set up their own club who are the
children who are Dreamers themselves and that exists at different schools
throughout the city of Chicago and there are 800,000 dreamers in the United
States of America, in Illinois there are 42,000 so slightly more than 5% I think
it’s the third largest in the United States of America are here in Illinois
and why the governor signed the Trust Act just the other day making Illinois a
welcoming state to be consistent with that we are calling on the Governor,
Governor Rauner to follow through on the spirit of the
trust act, encouraging and allowing map funding which is a funding for
individual students to go to college and higher education just like our Chicago
Star open it up to dreamers, let them access those resources so their dream is
not cut off prematurely. Use the resources of state to help now these
dreamers who will be facing legal action legal costs, use the resources of the state to
defer those legal costs so they can actually stay here as residents in
Illinois. There’s professional licenses that need to be changed so that Dreamers
can actually work in those professions like being a pharmacist,
there are things Illinois can do that is consistent with the spirit of the Trust
Act that allows dreamers to understand that their dreams are our dreams and if
you turn your back on them Illinois will be taking Dreamers and
rather than the American dream being accessible will turn into a nightmare.
Remember, they know no other country, they know no other value system, they have
fully embraced everything we have embraced and more because of us a lot of
us you know haven’t served in the Armed Forces yet they are. They have truly not
just educationally but also in what they’ve chosen to do with their lives
embrace the values and common understanding of who we are. Now I want
to say one other thing and I am very usually very careful I never talk about
private conversations I have with Presidents but the action by President
Trump yesterday is not consistent with what president-elect Trump said to me
when I delivered a letter by 16 other Mayors to him specifically on dreamers. He’s also not consistent although
he’s not the President with what now Chief of Staff Kelley said as a
Secretary of Homeland Security when we met upstairs in my office when he was
here in Chicago and I think we should all take note because I know that
Senator Durbin talked about his own conversation was communicated without
saying what the President said because I will not do that. The action
yesterday is not consistent with what he said the other day today rather when he
was president-elect when we met in New York and I delivered him specifically a
letter signed by multiple Mayors I think it was 16 it could been 18 but
16 or 18 Mayor’s from around the country different sizes different parts of the
country all calling on him to ensure that the executive order stays the
executive order as it relates to our Dreamers and the reason they’re called
Dreamers is because they do embrace and uphold the American dream and again
there’s a promise there. Chicago will do what it needs to do to help the
Dreamers fulfill their wishes to be and embrace all of America. We will never roll
back from the notion that the Chicago Star Scholarship, which was unique in the
United States, is here in the City of Chicago we established it that if you
get a B average in high school, community college is free and it’s open to
Dreamers. People who are dreamers can become summer it can be interns and the
Mayor’s Office the City Counsel’s Office people who are dreamers can access our
summer jobs we will never roll back, not just between here in March, after March
even if Congress does not act. So the steps that Chicago’s take are consistent
with our values and who we are

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