LOS ANGELES - Members of the California DREAM Network (CDNet) and CHIRLA joined the inauguration festivities in honor of California Governor Jerry Brown and handed him a letter requesting passage of the California DREAM Act and driver’s license legislation for unauthorized working immigrants. A few days earlier, the California Table, a state-wide coalition composed of more than 40 immigrant rights organizations, mailed Governor-elect Brown a congratulatory letter requesting an in-person meeting as soon as he takes office. The following are statements by Angelica Salas, Executive Director at the Coalition for Humane Immigrant Rights in Los Angeles (CHIRLA), and Maria Rodriguez, coordinator for the California DREAM Network, a project of CHIRLA.
Angelica Salas comments:
“The untold story from the November 2, 2010 election is that Latino and immigrant voters came out in full force to express their concerns and expectations for the nation. One of every five votes cast in California was by a Latino or an immigrant. Our letter to Governor Brown was to remind him that by large margins our community supported his vision for California and we expect him to remember our community’s priorities as he prepares to govern one of the most populous and diverse states in the country.
We asked our next governor to meet with us in person as soon as he is sworn into office so that we can help him begin the task of better integrating immigrants in our state, especially as we recover from one of the worst financial crisis since the Great Depression. Latinos and immigrants are core to the State of California and we look forward to becoming active partners with the Governor in the betterment of our Golden State.”
Maria Rodriguez comments:
“Today, a new governor for the State of California was inaugurated and members of the California DREAM Network were present to remind him that our academic success translates into our state’s economic strength in the near future. We called on Governor Brown to move swiftly to ensure the passage of the California DREAM Act and enact legislation that would permit unauthorized immigrants to obtain a California driver’s license.
A champion for democracy, California can certainly lead the way on these issues and offer practical and ethical options for other states to mimic and thus show Congress what must be done at the federal level. We look forward to working with Governor Brown and wish him a successful tenure.”