1. Action Alert
  2. Immigrants & Refugees

Still No Deal for Dreamers

By Diane Randall, February 9, 2018

The ink is barely dry on a budget deal whipped up at the last minute in Congress, but here's what we know

  • Congress gave another $80 billion to the Pentagon, bringing the total up to $700 billion, compared to $570 billion overall for domestic programs in 2018. The Pentagon's increase alone is more than most countries spend on their military.
  • Dreamers got left behind. Hundreds of thousands of young undocumented immigrants are still in limbo.
  • Essential domestic programs got a raise – but not as much as the Pentagon. Community Health Centers, the Special Diabetes Program for Indians, other health extenders, census funding, and desperately needed disaster relief made it into the final budget. For the families in Puerto Rico who have been living without power for months, this bill will make a real difference.

Overall, this is a bad deal – the massive Pentagon spending increase and the failure to protect Dreamers make it impossible for FCNL to support – but there were key wins for domestic programs and disaster relief. This additional domestic funding will make a vital difference in the lives of people in need.

While this deal finalizes many decisions, it leaves one big decision unmade. Congress still needs to figure out how to pass a pathway to citizenship for Dreamers. That’s where the FCNL community needs to focus moving forward.

Tell Congress: Dreamers are part of our communities, and passing a pathway to citizenship needs to be a top priority.

It’s been more than five months since President Trump revoked Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals – the program that let many Dreamers live and work in the United States. But, with this deal, Congress once again passed a budget deadline without enacting legislation that protects Dreamers from deportation and family separation.

Dreamers can’t wait. Contact Congress today.

Diane Randall

  • Executive Secretary

Diane Randall is the Executive Secretary of the Friends Committee on National Legislation. Diane leads FCNL’s staff to effectively educate and lobby for the policies and legislative priorities established by FCNL’s General Committee. A lifelong advocate for peace and social justice, Diane is a fierce proponent for citizen engagement that advances policies and practices to create a better society for all.