The Dreamers

On Tuesday, August 7th, AJC Cleveland and the Catholic Diocese convened a timely and important discussion on the Administration's newly announced "deferred action" process for certain childhood arrivals (commonly referred to as Dreamers). Almost 60 leaders from a wide array of our interfaith and intergroup partners gathered at The Breen Center at St Ignatius, to learn more about the policy's implementation and impact on our community. Our panelists provided accurate information, tools, and resources that attendees could take back to their own communities. In addition to discussing the process, a special emphasis was placed on reports of misinformation and the threat posed by "notarios."

Moderated by US Attorney Steve Dettelbach, the panel included AJC board member David Leopold (General Counsel and Past President of the American Immigration Lawyers Association), Jackie Guevara from Cleveland's US Citizenship and Immigration Services, with Myrna Orozco from United We Dream joining us via skype. In addition, we were very pleased that high ranking officials from USCIS and OCIS in Washington DC participated in our discussion by telephone. In light of our successful program, AJC will be working with the Office of the CIS Ombudsman in Washington to help facilitate outreach programs throughout the AJC footprint.

Special thanks to our partner, Sr Rita Mary Harwood (an angel and magician); and our planning committee -- community leaders David Leopold, Isabel Framer, Lynn Tramonte, and Veronica Dahlberg. Jenny Kaplan, the newest member of our AJC Cleveland team, said, "I was honored to be a part of this important intergroup event. It was painfully evident how important this topic is, and how confusing it would be as a DREAMER to understand your rights and navigate through this new process. I am so inspired that AJC takes such an active role in this humanitarian issue, and am grateful for the exposure to this topic that I've gained in the last three weeks." Welcome and thank you Jenny!