Letter: Congress Can Give Back

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Letter to the Editor

Growing up an undocumented Californian came with serious obstacles, I wasn’t always able to picture the life I’ve been able to build. By the time I was an adult of legal age, I was the only person in my family who was undocumented. After DACA was created, I became one of the first and oldest recipients of the program. I understand firsthand how terrifying it can be to live without legal status, and even with DACA, my status in this country is never guaranteed.

Right now, Congress has a once-in-a-generation opportunity to ensure that Dreamers, TPS holders, farmworkers and other essential workers finally have a sense of stability and certainty by passing a pathway to citizenship via budget reconciliation. This legislation would keep millions of families together, allow people who have been essential to the recovery from COVID-19 to continue to support their communities and ensure that millions of people are able to contribute fully to our workforce and economy.

I’m very grateful that we have Congressman Ted Lieu representing our community; in fact, in 2017, Lieu attended my live solo show about my experiences growing up in the U.S. as an undocumented American. His strong leadership and support for the immigrant community in Southern California has never been more important. I know we can count on him to keep fighting for immigrants through the budget reconciliation process. I hope Lieu’s colleagues will follow his example, and finally pass a long-overdue pathway to citizenship.

 Alex Alpharaoh