Special Reports

New Senate Bill Proposal Aims To Help Undocumented Students Afford College


With Donald Trump's official takeover of the White House, a lot of undocumented students are worried about their future. A new Senate Bill has been proposed to help this type of students.

The Hartford Courant reported that the proposed Senate Bill 17, also known as the Afford to Dream Bill, aims to give undocumented students access to financial aid funds for public colleges and universities. One of the groups advocating for the bill is Connecticut Students for a Dream.

Undocumented students are unable to get support from the government, especially through need-based grants, because they do not have a Social Security number. It is a requirement to fill out the application.

Critics of the proposal have warned that aid taken by undocumented students will mean less money for students with lawful status. On the other hand, supporters argued that obstacles that college students face that hinders them from graduating hurts the state workforce now as well as in the future.

According to News 12, immigrant students and state lawmakers protested in Hartford against President Donald Trump. The 45th President of the United States has been vocal about his plans for illegal immigration.

The state Senate passed the Afford to Dream Bill last year. However, it reportedly died in the House. This year, its future is now on the Higher Education Committee's hands.

The Day noted that Rep. Chris Soto, D-New London, described the barring of undocumented students from the financial aid fund as "one of the most unfair and egregious policies" that they've had. Soto founded Higher Edge, a nonprofit organization that helps low-income and first-generation immigrant students with their higher education.

Sen. Art Linares of Westbrook has opposed the bill, saying that the state may lose federal funding if its immigration policies are not in line with that of the Trump administration. Last Wednesday, President Trump has already promised to remove federal funds from sanctuary cities that do not follow and implement the immigration laws.

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