Officials for the Los Angeles Unified School District have moved to emphasize that their schools are a “safe haven” for illegal immigrants.
The announcement comes in the context of President Obama’s recent executive order preventing the deportation of illegal immigrants who have lived in the country for over five years or who arrived in the country as children.
A letter sent home with LAUSD schoolchildren Tuesday night told parents that they can trust the city’s schools to provide reliable information about Obama’s executive order without having to fear that their illegal status will be disclosed to anybody. The district also promised to help parents and students access any educational records they may need in order to apply for a legal reprieve from deportation. By doing so, it says it will be able to prevent deportations, thereby increasing stability for families and preventing “fear or sadness” for students who have family members in danger of deportation.
“We stand by all of our DREAMers and our families that can benefit from President Obama’s Executive Action on Immigration,” said Los Angeles school board member Mónica García in press release accompanying the letters.
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The school district’s letter urges parents to come to schools or other trusted locations to seek information about the executive order’s content, and to avoid being tricked by “so-called ‘notaries’ and dishonest lawyers” who could financially exploit them.
The district partnered with both the United Teachers of Los Angeles and the Service Employees International Union (SEIU) to make the announcement.
“We are united in this mobilization that will bring more of our families into the full light of the American Dream,” said school board vice president Steve Zimmer. “We stand together in support of our President and executive action.”
LAUSD is the country’s second-largest school district, and is believed to have several thousand students who are either the children of illegal immigrants or illegal immigrants themselves.
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