Group urges senators to approve DREAM Act

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SALT LAKE CITY -- A collection of youth, educators and religious leaders are urging Utah's United States Senators to approve the DREAM Act.

The Development, Relief and Education for Alien Minors (DREAM) Act applies to children of illegal-immigrant parents who entered the country before age 16. The act is a way to help some undocumented students gain legal status through school or military service.

Activists gathered in front of the office of senators Orrin Hatch and Bob Bennett at the Federal Building to encourage them to approve the legislation that was introduced in 2001.

"This is not amnesty," said Rep. Rebecca Chavez-Houck, D-Salt Lake City. "Amnesty says you need a free pass. These kids have to excel beyond their peers to get to this point."

Both senators Hatch and Bennett voted to add the DREAM Act to the defense authorization bill three years ago, but now both say they will oppose the legislation Tuesday.

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