For generations, the United States has held a proud tradition of welcoming immigrants and refugees. As the the daughter of immigrants, I know that each generation of immigrants comes to our country to work hard, persevere, and provide better opportunities for their families. Home to more than 3.5 million immigrants, Los Angeles’ highly diverse immigrant communities are the embodiment of the American dream.

Unfortunately, our broken immigration system puts the American dream out of reach for many immigrants. The best and brightest minds are shut out of our economy, leaving us at a competitive disadvantage. Entire groups are people are forced into the shadows for fear of inhumane treatment or deportation. Families are broken apart and children are forced to grow up without their parents for years on end.

This reality hurts thousands of families in our district, and is simply unacceptable. We need a plan that protects family unity and provides relief for the undocumented population that has been living and contributing to our communities for decades, while also protecting the rights of those seek asylum and other forms of humanitarian relief, modernizing and improving our legal immigration system, and maintaining the security of our borders.

That’s why I support legislation like the Dream and Promise Act, which would provide permanent relief to undocumented young people who are pursuing or have completed their education. Our district is home to thousands of hardworking Dreamers. They are teachers, servicemembers, health professionals, and much more. I am proud to support a pathway for Dreamers to become full citizens of the only country they have ever known.

To fix our immigration system and restore the American Dream we must continue working to develop policies that treat immigrants fairly and humanely; ensure efficient processing of immigration backlogs; and provide smart border security.