Dream Advocacy Toolkit
Messaging And Resources for bipartisan Dream legislation.
This Dream advocacy toolkit is for college and university leaders and their campuses to advocate on behalf of Dreamers. Recent court rulings against DACA underscore the urgency for Congress to act before the end of this year to protect DACA recipients and other Dreamers.
- Resources on contacting Members of Congress and sample scripts
- Talking points: DACA and Dreamers – What you need to know
- Social Media: graphics and sample tweets
- Resources from the Presidents’ Alliance and partners
For questions, please contact firstname.lastname@example.org.
The Presidents’ Alliance developed this Template Letter to Congress for Higher Ed Institutions for colleges and universities (individually or as a group of institutions in a state) to adapt and send to their Senate delegations urging bipartisan compromise to provide protection and a pathway to citizenship for DACA recipients, and other Dreamers.
For Presidents who wish to contact Senators directly and need contact information for key staffers for Senate offices, visit this spreadsheet to find your Congress Member’s staffer information (note: you can either use the tab for Immigration Legislative Assistants (LAs) or Legislative Directors (LDs).
If your institution does not have the capacity for a formal letter, here is a draft you can use for email outreach:
Talking Points: DACA and Dreamers – What You Need to Know
The United States is home to more than 400,000 undocumented students in higher education, including 181,000 DACA-eligible individuals. This means that one out of every 50 students in a college or university is undocumented. Congress must pass a permanent, legislative solution to ensure undocumented students and other Dreamers can stay in the U.S. and continue to contribute to their communities.
The recent Fifth Circuit Court ruling underscores that the future of Dreamers is in extreme jeopardy. On October 5, 2022, the Fifth Circuit U.S. Court of Appeals ruled DACA unlawful, and sent the case back to Judge Hanen for a ruling on the merits of the DHS DACA regulation. On October 14, Judge Hanen issued an order saying his 2021 ruling against DACA would also apply to the new DACA regulations, temporarily allowing renewals to continue but preventing new applications from being processed. It is unclear when Judge Hanen will rule on the legality of the new regulations, with the case expected to end up before the U.S. Supreme Court. We cannot afford to wait until the final blow is struck to this program by the courts.
Across the U.S., more 2.7 million Dreamers, including about 600,000 DACA recipients, have built lives, worked in key jobs and occupations, and started families. Dreamers are an integral part of their communities. Congress must pass a permanent, legislative solution this year.
Importance of DACA & Dreamers
- DACA has been transformative: DACA has been one of the most successful immigration initiatives in modern history and demonstrates why expanded opportunities for Dreamers strengthens America.
- Even so, it is not enough: Having a temporary program constantly challenged in the courts has negatively impacted DACA recipients. Additionally, the majority of undocumented students in higher education and pursuing their studies and contributing to their campuses and communities lack DACA protections and opportunities. We need a strong bipartisan solution for DACA recipients and other Dreamers.
Who are the Dreamers
- Dreamers are part of the fabric of our country and deserve to be recognized as the Americans they are.
- Dreamers are American in every way, except on paper. They came to the U.S. on average at the age of seven, and have lived in the United States for an average of 22 years. They grew up in American neighborhoods and went to American schools. Now, they are doctors, nurses, teachers, and engineers, many of whom are working in essential roles that helped respond and recover from the public health and economic crisis of COVID-19.
- A majority of undocumented students entering higher education are NOT eligible for DACA. And, nearly 100,000 undocumented students are graduating high school annually, but only a quarter of them are estimated to be eligible for DACA.
Dreamers and the Economy
- Dreamers are essential to a talented, educated workforce. At a time of labor shortages, with consequences ranging from inflation to diminished economic growth, we need the talents of the DACA workforce and other Dreamers.
- Dreamers are not just essential employees, but have also become employers, homeowners, military members, and founders of thriving businesses.
- If DACA is eliminated, an estimated 1,000 U.S. jobs will be lost every business day over the next two years.
Urgent Need for Permanent Relief
- There is a short window for a bipartisan compromise before the end of the year, and legislation protecting Dreamers should be one of the top priorities.
- The end of DACA would hurt our nation’s workforce and economy, leading to unnecessary terminations, turnover costs by employers, and chaos as hundreds of thousands of employed individuals are forced to leave their jobs.
Resources: Presidents’ Alliance and Partners
The Presidents’ Alliance recommends the following key resources and materials developed by our organization, partners, and others that provide helpful information regarding a Dream legislative solution in 2022.
Breakdown of Dreamer Populations: Both With and Without DACA. This resource provides an overview of the Dreamer and DACA-eligible populations, as well as the populations that would be eligible for legal status under various legislative proposals.
Directory of Presidents’ Alliance Resources to Support DACA Recipients, Undocumented Students, and Others: This directory page contains a list of all of the Presidents’ Alliance’s materials, including resources, advocacy tools, and best practices, to help institutions of higher education to support Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA) recipients, undocumented students, and other Dreamers (Presidents’ Alliance, November 2022).
Social Media Toolkit: Show Your Support for Dreamers: This page provides several infographics and sample social media posts, along with other ideas and resources, to help colleges and universities show their support for Dreamers and a legislative solution this year.(Presidents’ Alliance, November 2022).
Beyond DACA: A Directory of Resources for Undocumented Students & Individuals: A directory to provide the most recent resources to support undocumented students and individuals access and afford college, start their professional careers, and receive legal support and mental health support, among other types of resources (Higher Ed Immigration Portal, October 2022).
Remember the Dreamers: A website with resources for families and students, data on DACA and Dreamers and an action site to contact Congress.