If you’re an avid Desperate Housewives watcher, you know that Eva Longoria’s character, Gabrielle Solis, is currently tangled in a heart-wrenching storyline involving a past hospital baby switch. Gabby’s daughter Juanita is not biologically hers, but is the “anchor baby” of an undocumented Mexican couple who are now on the run with Gabby’s biological daughter (whom they raised from birth). We have yet to see where this plot is headed, but according to US law, Juanita could be taken to Mexico if her bio parents are deported.
In real life Longoria has been very vocal about immigration issues, and it appears that the writers are helping her use the show to bring attention to the serious plight undocumented children face. The actress has also recently donned the executive producer hat for the upcoming documentary “Harvest,” a film exposing the exploitation of migrant children who pick produce on American farms at sub-poverty wages.
“We won’t take a shirt made in China by a child, but yet in our own country 25% of the food we eat is harvested by a child…Over 500,000 kids are working in the fields and 80 to 90 percent are American children. We have these mixed-nationality families…How does immigration reform address those kinds of families?” -Eva
This morning Longoria joined a group of Latino leaders in addressing a letter to the leadership of the US Senate urging them to pass the Development, Relief and Education for Alien Minors Act (DREAM Act). If passed, the legislation would provide a path to citizenship for children who were brought illegally to the United States by their parents.
December 16, 2010
Dear Senators Reid and McConnell:
As Latino leaders in government, business, entertainment, and sports, we urge members of Congress to support the “Development, Relief, and Education of Alien Minors (DREAM) Act.” This modest and sensible piece of legislation would allow young people who were brought to the United States by their parents at a very young age to pursue higher education or serve in the military.
These students are success stories in their communities, serving as student body presidents, star athletes, and performers, graduating often with honors from schools in their hometowns. Our country benefits immensely from the talent and drive to succeed that they demonstrate. They want the chance to go on to college or serve in the military to continue giving back to the only country they have ever called home.
We know from a recently released study that the students covered under the “DREAM Act” will contribute at least one trillion dollars to the American economy over the course of their lifetimes. Moreover, according to the Congressional Budget Office, enacting the “DREAM Act” would reduce the deficit by $1.4 billion dollars over ten years. The intangible benefits of investing in these students’ futures, however, are immeasurable.
America cannot afford to lose another generation of young people who stand to contribute to its economic and social prosperity. The beneficiaries of the “DREAM Act” are our future teachers, nurses, and engineers. The U.S. has invested in the education of many of these individuals since kindergarten, and it is only fitting that we enable them to serve and contribute, allowing our nation to reap the benefits. The Latino community is counting on Congress to come together and show its support for the future of these young people and the nation.
The Honorable Henry G. Cisneros
The Honorable Carlos Gutierrez
The Honorable Federico F. Peña
The Honorable Bill Richardson
Solomon D. Trujillo
The Honorable Antonio Villaraigosa