While immigration reforms have stalled in Washington, D.C., progress has been made in Washington State. Republicans in the State Senate have voted to provide financial aid to students who were illegally brought to the United States as children. Republicans reportedly decided to support the proposal after ensuring that thousands of students already on the list for state financial aid will not be put at any disadvantage. “This act is the Real Hope Act. No more dreams. This is real hope,” said Sen. Barbara Bailey, the prime sponsor of the bill.
The Republican version of the legislation includes $5 million for the State Need Grant program to offset the expected increase in financial aid. About 1,100 more students will receive aid in the upcoming academic year. Although 74,000 students currently receive State Need Grants, 32,000 other eligible students received no grants this year because funds were exhausted.
Passage of the so-called “state Dream Act” comes as a surprise to many observers. State Senate Republicans declined to consider the bill after it passed the State House last year, and they obstructed an attempt by Democrats in the chamber to bring up the proposal. “To me this is really about making sure all kids have the keys to hope, that all kids have the keys to opportunity, that all kids have the keys to the American dream,” Senate Majority Leader Rodney Tom said.
But many immigrants, particularly undocumented immigrants, need other kinds of help. If you are an immigrant facing any problem regarding your documentation, status, visa, or any other legal issue, consult right away with an experienced immigration attorney. Immigration laws are still strictly enforced, but a good immigration lawyer will help you get your paperwork and applications in order, answer your questions, and help you achieve your own dreams in the United States. If you’re dealing with any immigration problem, speak to an experienced immigration attorney as quickly as you can.