State College Mayor Elizabeth Goreham, Penn State Law Professor Shoba Sivaprasad Wadhia and campus Pastor Ben Wideman urged support on Wednesday for a DREAM act to secure the future for recipients of DACA, or Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals.
The group asked Congressman Glenn Thompson to take action through a conference call with the media.
Mayor Goreham urged Thompson to pass a DREAM act by the end of the year.
“We’ve done everything we can to make sure that people from other cultures, other countries who may or may not have legal status feel welcome in our community,” Goreham said.
Although not a sanctuary city, State College adopted a resolution earlier this year saying immigration enforcement is a federal responsibility and the borough will not inquire about constituents’ immigration status.
Other Pennsylvania cities, like Lancaster, took similar actions, while both Philadelphia and Pittsburgh have declared sanctuary city status.
According to United States Citizenship and Immigration Services, there are about 4,900 DACA recipients in Pennsylvania.
In a statement, Thompson said DACA recipients “deserve a legal and viable path toward earning citizenship.”