The Dream Act of 2017 (S. 1615 & H.R. 3440)

August 15, 2017
Many people who are at risk of hunger have jobs—even more than one—and work hard just to get by and put food on the table for their families. Photo: Joe Molieri / Bread for the World


The United States is a nation of immigrants. Throughout its history, people have moved here from all over the world and have contributed to their communities and our national life. Today, as in the past, immigrants are also creating prosperity for this nation. 

Despite their contributions, many immigrants face discrimination and barriers to opportunity. This increases their likelihood of struggling with hunger and poverty. The national rate of household food insecurity is 12.7 percent, while the rate for households with undocumented immigrants is 24 percent. Undocumented migrant and seasonal workers face food insecurity rates as high as 65 percent.


In 2012, in response to our broken immigration system, President Obama announced a new Department of Homeland Security policy called The Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals, or DACA. DACA provides temporary relief and protection from removal as well as work authorization to young undocumented students and veterans who grew up in the United States. Many findings indicate that DACA has significantly helped undocumented youth achieve higher paying jobs and education while increasing their contribution to the local economy.

About the Bill

The Dream Act of 2017 would offer a path to permanent legal status for millions of undocumented immigrant youths. The bill passage is crucial given the fact that DACA’s future is uncertain. Recently, 10 attorneys general sent the U.S Attorney General Jeff Sessions a letter threatening to sue the Trump administration if the DACA program was not terminated by Sept. 5, 2017.

A pathway to citizenship under the Dream Act would ensure that Dreamers can continue to contribute to their communities through work, service, and schooling. The proposed legislation would provide Conditional Permanent Residency and employment authorization for eight years. Afterward, Dreamers could apply for Legal Permanent Residency and begin the application process for citizenship.  

We urge all members of Congress to co-sponsor the Dream Act of 2017. Bread for the World will continue to support legislation, like the Dream Act, that strives for lasting solutions to our broken immigration system. To ultimately end hunger, achieving solutions that last is key.

Take Action on This Issue

Give "Dreamers" a Pathway to Citizenship. Urge your members of Congress to co-sponsor and support the bipartisan Dream Act of 2017

from our Resource Library

For Education

  • The Nourishing Effect

    Hunger and food insecurity add at least $160 billion a year to U.S. healthcare costs.

  • Mass Incarceration: A Major Cause of Hunger

    Mass incarceration has far-reaching effects in the United States. It poses a significant barrier to ending U.S. hunger and poverty by 2030—a goal the United States adopted in 2015. But the connection is not always obvious.

  • Advancing Nutrition through Food Aid Reform

    The United States has long been a global leader in responding to humanitarian emergencies. Food assistance that includes nutritious food for pregnant women and young children is both a life-and-death matter for individuals and an economic imperative for countries.

For Faith

  • Unity Declaration on Racism and Poverty

    A diverse body of Christian leaders calls on the churches and Congress to focus on the integral connection.

    Dear Members of Congress,

    As the president and Congress are preparing their plans for this year, almost 100 church leaders—from all the families of U.S. Christianity—are...

  • In Times Like These … A Pan-African Christian Devotional for Public Policy Engagement

    This devotional guide invites deepened relationship with and among Pan-Af­rican people and elected leaders in the mission to end hunger and poverty.

  • Sermon by David Beckmann at Duke University Chapel

    Remarks delivered October 1, 2017 at Duke University Chapel in Chapel Hill in North Carolina.

    Thank you for inviting me to preach here at Duke University Chapel. And I especially want to thank the Bread for the World members who have come this morning.

    Bruce Puckett urged...

For Advocacy

  • Grassroots Advocacy Toolkit

    A set of how-to sheets for carrying out advocacy and fact sheets on the current issues Bread for the World is working on.

    For new and current Bread grassroots hunger activists.

    Ideal as a starter toolkit for new Bread activists or as a set of updates for current activists.


  • Sentencing Reform and Corrections Act of 2017

    Unnecessarily long prison sentences, combined with the lack of rehabilitative programs for people in prison, exacerbate hunger, poverty, and existing inequalities.

    Overly harsh mandatory minimum prison sentences have contributed to the rapid increase of our country’s prison population. The...

  • Health Care Is a Hunger Issue

    Learn more about the principles that Bread for the World supports regarding health reform.


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