APPROXIMATELY 500 INDIVIDUALS PARTICIPATED IN DEFERRED ACTION FOR CHILDHOOD ARRIVALS (DACA) EVENT

Press Release By DREAMers Coalition on  Monday, September 16, 2012 Omaha, Nebraska – On Sunday September 9, approximately 500 individuals, including potential applicants, their families, and volunteers, participated in an informational community event on Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA) at the Millennium Hall in South Omaha. DACA is an executive decision by the Obama Administration that would provide temporary work permits to law-­‐abiding immigrant youth who came to the U.S. as children.

The event, organized by community organizations and legal service providers, began with an informational session on DACA, the requirements and process. As a result, 180 qualified individuals were provided free consultations with 17 private attorneys and Board of Immigration Appeals (BIA) Accredited Representatives, who volunteered their time for the event.

Currently, Justice for Our Neighbors of Nebraska (JFON-­‐NE) is reviewing the results of the consultations and will communicate by mail within the next two weeks with all participants who received a consultation. Eligible applicants, who demonstrated financial need and interest in applying, will be assigned to a Pro-Bono attorney or a non-­‐profit legal service organization for free or low-­‐cost legal representation. Those who do qualify for DACA, but have not demonstrated financial need, will be provided with a list of private immigration attorneys. JFON-­‐NE strongly encourages all DACA applicants to on apply for it with the assistance of an immigration attorney or BIA accredited representative.

The actions of this community coalition are not limited to this event and will continue in terms of community engagement. DACA is only a temporary solution and the result of various organizations persuading President Obama to take further action to protect young immigrants. The actions of this community coalition support common sense immigration laws and promote civic education and participation as a strategy to promote more engaged communities.

Contact Persons:

Emiliano Lerda, Justice for Our Neighbors 402.898.1349/ emiliano@jfon-ne.org

Carolina Quezada, Latino Center of the Midlands 402.733.2720/ cquezada@latinocenterofthemidlands.org

Sergio Sosa, Heartland Workers Center 402.933.6095/ sergio.hwcomaha@gmail.com