Sens. Kelly, Cortez Masto, and Durbin Push to Allow Dreamers to Work in Congress

Today, United States Senator Mark Kelly (D-AZ) joined Senators Catherine Cortez Masto (D-NV) and Dick Durbin (D-IL) in reintroducing legislation to allow Dreamers to work in Congress. The American Dream Employment Act lifts the current ban on Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA) and Temporary Protected Status (TPS) recipients from working or participating in paid internships in Congress.

Kelly also backs the DREAM Act, a bipartisan bill that would allow Dreamers to earn lawful permanent residence and a pathway to citizenship. 

“Dreamers have started small businesses, served in our military, and given back to our communities in countless ways but still face barriers despite their success and achievements. Arizonans, whether they are Dreamers or TPS holders, should be able to work in Congress where their knowledge, talent, and skills are needed. I look forward to working with my colleagues to get our bill across the finish line,” said Senator Kelly. 

“Our government should be as diverse as the people we represent, and that includes the Dreamers and TPS holders who are part of our communities and who are working legally in Nevada and across the country,” said Senator Cortez Masto. “My legislation will give them a voice in our government by allowing them to directly shape the laws that impact them and their families.”

“I have met hundreds of Dreamers who are giving back to their communities as teachers, nurses, engineers, civil rights advocates, and more,” said Senator Durbin. “Many Dreamers and TPS recipients are dedicated to public service, and it makes no sense to deprive Congress of this talent pool. The American Dream Employment Act, which I’m introducing with Senator Cortez Masto, would finally let Dreamers and TPS recipients work as paid employees or interns on Capitol Hill. Over the years, several Dreamers have worked in my office as volunteer interns, and Illinois would greatly benefit if they were given the chance to work as paid employees.”

The bill is supported by United We Dream, UnidosUS,, Coalition for Humane Immigrant Rights (CHIRLA), Lutheran Immigration and Refugee Service (LIRS), Immigration Hub, Nevada Immigrant Coalition, TPS Committee of Nevada, and Arriba Las Vegas Worker Center.