Monday, June 29, 2009

Support the Dream Act

As the United States moves (we sure hope!) ever closer to enacting comprehensive immigration reform, there are opportunities NOW to support some smaller pieces of legislation that would get Congress moving in the right direction. The DREAM (Development, Relief and Education for Alien Minors) Act is a bipartisan proposal, which would create a pathway to citizenship for thousands of young students who were brought to the United States as children. Current immigration law puts an educated class of promising students at risk for deportation to their "home countries," places most of these students hardly know.

Watch this video to hear the stories of dream students:

The DREAM Act has four basic requirements which are:

  • The student entered the country before the age of 16;
  • The student has graduated high school or obtained a GED;
  • The student is of good moral character (no criminal record); and
  • The student has been present continuously in the US for at least five years.

Under the DREAM Act, those who meet the criteria will have six years within which to obtain a two-year college degree or complete two-years of military service. Upon completion the individual will be given the opportunity to adjust his or her conditional permanent residency to U.S. citizenship.

There is no question that comprehensive immigration reform (CIR) is necessary to bring all undocumented persons out of the shadows. However, the DREAM Act is a step in the right direction.

Here are some actions you can take:

Click here to sign a petition asking President Obama and Congress to pass the DREAM Act.

Click here to help stop the deportation of Dream Student, Walter Lara.

Watch and share this video with others. Dream students dare to come out of the shadows and share their stories at a special graduation ceremony.

Rescheduling BorderLinks Trip

Happy Summer, everyone.

Quick update on the BorderLinks trip. Due to a lack of interest, we had to cancel the delegation we planned for July 29-August 1st. We are trying to find a new date that works for more people. If you'd like to come, please reply to me on this thread letting me know which of these three dates would be good for you:

August 5-8
August 12-15
October 28-31

We need to have 10 people in order to make the trip. Cost is $200 + travel (that includes an MFSA scholarship of $100!).

The trip will be an educational and interactive experience on the US(Arizona)-Mexico border: learning, sharing and serving to bring about positive social transformation in the areas of migration and immigration.

For more info on BorderLinks, visit or check out the info in the previous post.
Click here to see a sample itinerary of a BorderLinks delegation.

If you're interested in joining us or for more information on the trip, contact

Monday, June 1, 2009

Take Action for Families on International Children's Day!

Greetings, OnFire members. Today is International Children's Day and along with the Interfaith Immigration Coalition, we want to call Congress to let them know that family unity is intrinsic to our faith and values. It's easy!

1. Find your Representative and 2 Senators online here:

2. Make 3 calls to Capitol Hill. Call your Representative and both of your Senators. Call the Capitol Hill switchboard at (202) 224-3121 and ask for your Representative and both of your Senators. To each office, you can say something like: "Hi, my name is [name] and I’m from [city, state]. As a United Methodist, I believe family is the bedrock of American society. Please keep families together by supporting the Senate bill, Reuniting Families Act."

3. After you call, make a post on the OnFire wall to let us know that you did. And if you missed International Children's Day, that's ok! Our goal for the week is 20 calls!

CALLING CONGRESS IS NOT INTIMIDATING. You will speak with someone in your Congressperson's office who will make note of your support for the Reuniting Families Act, and that's it! Unless, of course, you'd like to share more.

Here are some links for more info:

Reuniting Families Act

Interfaith Immigration Coalition

News: Teens deported on way to school

OnFire blog: