A young undocumented immigrant is making a powerful and heart-wrenching plea for permanent relief in a new ad set to run on major networks in the coming weeks.
Miryam, a Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA) recipient, says that since childhood she has dreamed of becoming a doctor. “My family has worked so hard for me to be able to go to medical school.” But the precarious state of the popular and successful DACA program following Republicans’ anti-immigrant attacks has continued to leave Miryam’s future in limbo. Listen to her story.
“My family is undocumented,” Miryam says in the ad. “When I was 7, I knew I wanted to become a doctor to help and to heal people. My family has worked so hard for me to be able to go to medical school. Yet every time I take one step forward, I am pushed back five. And I am tired of being afraid. I am a good American and I deserve citizenship.”
Miryam’s ad, launched as part of a six-figure campaign by immigrant rights advocacy group America’s Voice, premiered during 60 Minutes Sunday night and is set to run on networks including CNN and MSNBC within the next two weeks. It comes as temporary immigration provisions passed by House Democrats are now before Senate Parliamentarian Elizabeth MacDonough.
“While the immigration provisions included in the Build Back Better legislative package do not include a direct path to citizenship, which Americans support and immigrants like Miryam have earned, the provisions nevertheless represent a meaningful step forward for millions of immigrant families, including Miryam’s, and move us closer to achieving our goal of citizenship for all,” America’s Voice said in a release received by Daily Kos.
MacDonough has so far rejected Congressional Democrats’ first two immigration proposals, including a pathway to citizenship, despite clear precedent for passing provisions through the budget reconciliation process. A third plan consisting of 10-year work permits, deportation protections, and international travel authorization passed the House late last month. Since then, dozens of House Democrats and advocates have further called on Senate leadership to overrule MacDonough and reinsert a pathway to citizenship.
MacDonough’s nonbinding opinion on the third immigration proposal is expected any day now. This is the exact kind of of waiting and uncertainty that’s only worsened the anguish of undocumented families and immigrants like Miryam.
“By overwhelming margins, the American people know that immigration reform strengthens our nation and formally recognizes undocumented immigrants as the Americans they already are,” America’s Voice Executive Director Frank Sharry said in the release. The people have already spoken by giving Democrats control of the White House, House, and Senate. Now Democrats need to deliver. “Doing nothing to help Americans like Miryam is unconscionable and shameful,” Sharry continued.