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Rep. Torres Signs Petition to Bring DREAM Act to the House Floor, Calls for Immediate Action

Washington, DC – Today, Rep. Norma J. Torres (CA-35) joined dozens of House Democrats in signing a petition to force a vote on the bipartisan DREAM Act. If the petition is signed by a majority of Members, the House would have to take a vote on this legislation, which would offer a path to citizenship for young immigrants who were brought to the United States as children.

“President Trump has put in jeopardy the hopes and dreams of hard-working young immigrants.” said Rep. Torres. “Now Congress must act to protect those 800,000 young men and women, who bravely came out of the shadows to sign up for the DACA program. I urge each and every one of my colleagues to sign this discharge petition and bring the DREAM Act to the floor. ”

Rep. Torres has been a strong and vocal supporter of the effort to bring peace of mind to young DREAMers who are living in fear because of President Trump’s dangerous decision to end the Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA) program, which protected them against deportation. Torres has met with DREAMers from the 35th District and participated in events in the community calling attention to the unique challenges they face, including the many who know no other home than the United States.

H.R. 3440, the DREAM Act, is bipartisan, bicameral legislation which would permanently protect DREAMers from deportation. It was originally introduced by Rep. Lucille Roybal-Allard (D-CA) and Rep. Ileana Ros-Lehtinen (R-FL) on July 26. Rep. Torres is a cosponsor of the bill. In addition to cosponsoring the DREAM Act, Torres has introduced the Dreamer Protection Act (H.R. 1487), and attempted to block funding and prevent the deportation of Dreamers.

Residents of the 35th congressional district, which includes the cities of Bloomington, Chino, Fontana, Montclair, Ontario, Pomona, and Rialto, should call Rep. Torres’s Ontario Office at (909) 481-6474 with any questions or concerns. They can also reach her office through a 24 hour immigration hotline should they need help outside of regular hours at (909) 767-7038.

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Statement from My Brother’s Keeper Alliance (MBK Alliance) on Integration with the Obama Foundation

For more than three years, the work of My Brother’s Keeper (MBK) – and later the My Brother’s Keeper Alliance (MBK Alliance) – has been central to President Obama’s efforts to address persistent opportunity gaps facing boys and young men of color and to ensure all youth can reach their full potential. These initiatives have launched a national movement that has inspired 250 cities, counties, and Tribal Nations to accept the MBK Community Challenge, driven the implementation of scores of new policy initiatives, and led to exponential increases in aligned private sector commitments – all helping to reduce barriers and to expand opportunity from cradle to career.

We are pleased to announce that the MBK Alliance will continue its critical mission as a core initiative of the Obama Foundation. President Obama has stated repeatedly that the mission of MBK Alliance would be part of his life’s work. By joining forces, MBK Alliance and the Obama Foundation will be better equipped to meet the goal so fundamental to the lifelong vision of President Obama – an America where all children can reach their full potential no matter who they are or where they come from.

“President Obama has inspired leaders from all sectors to join together, pursue common ground and strategies, and take meaningful action to ensure our boys feel valued and have clear pathways to opportunity. MBK Alliance’s board of directors remains dedicated to this mission and could not be more thrilled to unite with the Obama Foundation to deepen and accelerate our work.”

–Broderick Johnson, Chair of the MBKA Board of Directors

Johnson, currently a partner at Bryan Cave, served in the Obama Administration as Assistant to the President, Cabinet Secretary and Chair of the My Brother’s Keeper Task Force. Johnson will continue to chair the MBK Alliance Advisory Committee within the Obama Foundation.

“MBK has catalyzed an unprecedented all-in movement for our kids who are so often left on the margins of society. Together, with the Obama Foundation, we’re excited to take this work to the next level with greater focus on impact, innovation and collaboration.”

-Michael Smith, Executive Director, MBK Alliance & Director

Youth Opportunity Programs, Obama Foundation

Smith served as Special Assistant to President Obama for My Brother’s Keeper at the White House and has served as Acting Executive Director of MBK Alliance on loan from the Obama Foundation since May. He will continue to lead the initiative within the Obama Foundation.

Read the Obama Foundation Press Release: https://www.obama.org/updates/obama-foundation-announces-slate-programming-fall-2017-fall-summit-hosted-president-mrs-obama/

Read more about MBK Alliance at ObamaFoundation.org: https://www.obama.org/mbka/

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Racism in the United States: Who’s Responsible for Fixing the Problem?

Racism remains a prevalent problem in the United States. But many Americans do not think the responsibility to end racism is exclusive to one race. Rather, the responsibility belongs to both black and white people, according to this Exclusive Third Rail with OZY-Marist Poll, commissioned by WGBH Boston and OZY Media for the new PBS prime-time, cross-platform debate program Third Rail with OZY.

Americans perceive the solution to lie in the hands of everyone, and do not believe black people need to work harder than others to end racism. The disparity in the perception of societal advancement between blacks and whites has not improved. Although half of Americans assert that both black and white people have an equal chance of getting ahead in today’s society, by more than 10-to-one Americans say white people have a better chance than black people of doing so. And, this disparity has changed little over the past 20 years.

The national survey was conducted by The Marist Poll in advance of this week’s Third Rail with OZY debate, airing Friday, September 15, 2017 at 8:30pm ET (check local listings) and streaming on pbs.org/thirdrail, which asks: Is America becoming more, or less, racist? Third Rail with OZY, hosted by Emmy Award-winning journalist Carlos Watson, is a seven-part cross-platform series. Each week, expert and celebrity guests engage with Watson to debate a timely, provocative topic, incorporating audience and social media input and exclusive national polls.

The onus to improve race relations is on everyone, according to 60% of Americans. However, 22% of residents believe the responsibility belongs to white people, and 7% say black people need to work on correcting the problem.

A majority of residents (56%) do not think people of color need to work harder to end racism while 37% believe people of color need to do more. A racial divide exists. African American, (57%) and Latino (42%) residents are more likely than white Americans (32%) to say that people of color need to work harder to end racism.

“The survey calls to mind the reflections of Martin Luther King Jr., ‘The arc of the moral universe is long, but it bends toward justice,’” says Dr. Lee M. Miringoff, Director of The Marist College Institute for Public Opinion. “But, in its totality, the results demonstrate the arc is bending very slowly, at best.”

Half of Americans (50%) think white and black people have an equal chance of getting ahead in today’s society. This is little changed from 46% of U.S. residents who expressed this view in a 1997 CBS News/New York Times survey. Forty-one percent compared to 43% two decades ago say white people have a better chance at advancing. Only 4% think black people have the edge in getting ahead, similar to 5% in the 1997 survey.

 

Again, opinions differ by race. While a majority of white Americans (54%) say both black and white residents have an equal chance of advancing, nearly two-thirds of African Americans (65%) and half of Latinos (50%) report white people have the advantage to move ahead in today’s society.

Americans perceive racism to be a bigger issue in American society than sexism. Fifty-four percent of U.S. residents consider the nation to be more racist than sexist. Twenty-four percent think America is more sexist than racist. One in ten (10%) say the United States is neither racist nor sexist, and 12% are unsure. Both men (48%) and women (61%) think the country is more racist, but interestingly, men (28%) are more likely than women (19%) to consider it to be more sexist.

“Racism continues to be a defining issue for this nation,” says Denise Dilanni, series creator and Executive in Charge of Third Rail with OZY. “The topic has dominated the public and political arenas in the past year, which is why on Friday we’ll debate the question: Is America becoming more, or less, racist?”

The exclusive Marist/Third Rail with OZY poll asked Americans: do President Donald Trump’s comments about people of color such as Muslims, immigrants, or African Americans make it more or less acceptable for people to make racist comments? A plurality (46%) says it makes it more acceptable, including 63% of African Americans and 53% of Latinos. Thirty-six percent of Americans think the president’s remarks make it less acceptable. Nearly one in five (18%) are unsure.

Democrats (67%) and independents (49%) are more likely than Republicans (20%) to believe President Trump’s comments about people of color make it more acceptable to make racist comments. Fifty percent of Republicans say his statements make it less acceptable.

More than half of Americans (51%) think the anti-immigration movement is simply about securing the country’s borders while 35% believe it is really an anti-people of color movement. Fourteen percent are unsure. Again, Democrats (63%) African Americans (57%) and Latinos (46%) are more likely than Republicans (5%) and white residents, (29%) to think the anti-immigration movement is about race.

 

For more on Third Rail with OZY:

pbs.org/thirdrail

#ThirdRailPBS

 

For more on The Marist Poll:

maristpoll.marist.edu

#MaristPoll

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