FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
September 8, 2014
How long is America willing to prioritize politics over families and our future?
How far will our elected leaders go to avoid making decisions that would allow millions to pursue the American dream and participate fully in strengthening our communities and our economy?
We have to ask, because right now, it’s entirely unclear. Congress has failed to act or answer, and our President is now following suit.
On August 20, Define American and partner organizations launched the unprecedented #1of11Million campaign, wherein 11 undocumented Americans from across the country applied for deferred action to spark a conversation around the complexities of the immigration system in America. Among the cases is Define American’s founder Jose Antonio Vargas, who awaits next steps in the judicial process after he was detained in McAllen, Texas while documenting the crisis at the border.
Define American signed a letter which was sent to the administration on Friday, September 5 by “One of 11 Million” (#1of11million) campaign partner, the National Immigration Law Center. In that letter, Define American and over 180 organizations asked the President not to delay his action on immigration.
Naturally, we are disheartened by President Obama's announcement on Saturday, September 6, that he would delay any action on immigration until after Election Day.
“Now more than ever, it is important to humanize the stories and elevate the conversation,” says Define American Campaign Director, Ryan Eller. “The faces of the 11 million affected individuals should be at the forefront as the administration determines what actions they will take.”
The cases of #1of11Million participants still hang in the balance — most of them have lived in the United States for over a decade. They are among the roughly 70,000 individuals that could be deported between now and Election Day.
“Will he meet with those who his decisions impacts directly prior to making his final decision? Politics aside, will the President stay true to his word?” asked Vargas. “The critical question remains: How do we define American?”
For the latest developments on all the #1of11Million campaign cases, visit defineamerican.com.
Contact: Maria Cruz Lee, Define American Communications and Engagement Director [email protected] / 347-882-3225