Archbishop Gomez calls USA Act ‘a good-faithrncompromise on both sides... It is time for those standing in the way of arnsolution to stand down’    

Archbishop José H. Gomez today echoed the call of the U.S.rnConference of Catholic Bishops (USCCB) for Congress to pass the “Uniting and Securing America” (USA) Act of 2017 (H.R.rn4796) to protect young people known as “Dreamers” from deportation.  USCCB Migration Committee Chair Bishop Joe S.rnVásquez of Austin, TX, today announced the bishops’ support of the compromisernlegislation to replace the DeferredrnAction for Childhood Arrivals (DACA) program which was ended byrnPresident Donald Trump on March 5.

The USA Act is a bipartisanrnbill, introduced by Representatives Will Hurd (R-TX), Pete Aguilar (D-CA) andrnJeff Denham (R-CA), that would provide qualifying Dreamers with protection fromrndeportation, as well as a path to citizenship. Additionally, the USA Act ofrn2017 would augment border security at the U.S./Mexico border, in part throughrndeployment of new technology; increase the number of immigration judges andrnBoard of Immigration Appeals staff attorneys; and seek to address root causesrnand prevent future irregular migration as a condition of aid to CentralrnAmerica.

“We are hopeful our supportrnof the current version of the USA Act, and our continued support of the DreamrnAct, will encourage Congress to act now and find a humane legislative solutionrnfor Dreamers,” noted Bishop Vásquez.

In his weekly column in thernArchdiocese’s news magazine, Angelus,rnArchbishop Gomez reiterated the USCCB announcement, “I am urging the Speakerrnand the Majority Leader of the House of Representatives to allow debate on thisrncritical issue. For several years now, immigration reform has been blocked inrnthe House by a small group of lawmakers who are using their leverage to preventrnany legislation from being brought up for a vote on the House floor.  This situation is not fair and in fact itrnfrustrates the will of the American people.

“This is not aboutrnRepublicans or Democrats. It is about right and wrong. As I have been sayingrnfor years now, both parties are using this issue for their own political gain.rnEven now, we can see there are still some who seem content to sacrifice thernDreamers’ futures for the chance to mobilize voters in the next election. This isrnheartless and cruel. It is time to stop. People’s lives are in the balance.

“These young people didrnnothing wrong and yet they have spent their entire lives in a kind of legalrnlimbo, with limited rights and opportunities and no certainty about their future.rnBy any measure, these are the kindrnof young people that our country should be encouraging. Nearly everyone — 97rnpercent — is either in school or in the workforce. Many serve in our armedrnforces and law enforcement.”

The Archbishop emphasizedrnthat the USA Act “represents a good-faith compromise on both sides — tradingrnassurances for the Dreamers in exchange for border-security improvements.”

“This is a victory for common sense and our commonrnhumanity. It is time for those standing in the way of a solution to stand down,”rnconcluded the column.

Click here for the full column from Archbishop Gomez in English and Spanish.

Interested in more? Subscribe to Angelus News to get daily articles sent to your inbox.