May 20, 2014 | Events, Student Feature
From April 28-May 2 Guttman Community College hosted the 12th annual Citizenship NOW! hotline, co-sponsored by the New York Daily News and the City University of New York (CUNY) to provide free and confidential citizenship and immigration information to thousands of callers. Many prominent New York State and city officials visited the college during the week to support the event and meet the volunteers. State Senator Liz Krueger (Democrat, 28th Senate District) visited Citizenship Now! and agreed to be interviewed by continuing student Raul Ramirez regarding her thoughts on immigration.
Interview with Senator Liz Krueger:
This interview was recorded digitally and transcribed by Raul Ramirez. Below are the responses to the two questions posed to the State Senator.
Q: What is it about the subject of immigration that persuades you to be an advocate of immigration reform?
A: The fact is that here in the state of New York, pretty much we are all immigrants or have immediate family members who are immigrants. All four of my grandparents were new Americans and the experience of my own family, I have learned quite a bit about it being Jew from Eastern Europe, who came here around the turn of the twentieth century. For me, the understanding of the issues of being an immigrant in America and even the issues of being a minority in America is a part of my upbringing and part of my own history.
Q: In light of the Dream Act being vetoed in the State Senate, what are your thoughts about providing financial assistance to those who are undocumented?
A: I feel very strongly about it and I have asked the Governor if we could do this through executive order, which did not get through the Senate. I have people who ask me that if they cannot afford to send their own kids to college why should people who are here illegally go to college? Those students are eligible for TAP, and these students are asking for the same help. They are here because they were brought here as young children by their families and they’re going to be here whether you agree or not with the federal immigration policy. So if they’re going to be here, don’t you want them to have an education so that they can go out and get jobs and be successful in our society and our economy and pay taxes?