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O U R  S T O R Y 

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The start of the IEIYC dates back to the Dream Act, which would have provided a pathway to legal status for undocumented youth who came to the U.S. as children. Despite the economic benefits and opportunities the bill could have brought to life, this piece of legislation was crushed by the U.S. Senate. Leaders of the collective then shifted their efforts towards the decriminalization of immigrant communities, ending detention and deportations. Because the founders directly experienced discrimination and limited access to resources, they created their own collective where they can bring their whole selves to organize and support one another.


CA DREAM Act signed into law

The California Dream Act allows undocumented students, DACA recipients, U Visa holders and students under Temporary Protected Status (TPS), who qualify for a non-resident exemption under Assembly Bill 540 (AB 540), Senate Bill 2000 (SB 2000) and Senate Bill 68 (SB 68), to receive certain types of financial aid such as: private scholarships funded through public universities state administered financial aid university grants community college fee waivers Cal Grants The CA Dream Act also allows eligible students to pay in-state tuition at any public college in California. The IEIYC continues to support undocu-students by providing 1-1 guidance & hosting CA Dream Act workshops.




Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA)

In 2012, IEIYC members occupied the Obama for America offices in Colorado and Oakland to push for DACA. Today, there are 60,000 DACA recipients living in the Inland Empire. Still, we hold community meetings where youth can voice their concerns, receive 1 on 1 support, resources. We've trained youth volunteers to pre-screen potential DACA candidates, learn about the renewal process, and even receive financial relief for applications. Even after they submit their application, we've been able to build relationships with community members to ensure they are well and directed to the services they need.



Members of the IEIYC have always urged state & local officials to shut down the Adelanto detention center from the very beginning. From the civil disobedience action demonstrated by IEIYC leaders, to car rallies, and light vigils, we continue the fight to #freethemALL. These private prisons operate under the exploitation of our friends, family, parents, & neighbors. We demand mass releases, an end in detention expansions and for prison corporations to be held accountable for the harm they inflict on our communities. There is a need for systems of care and investment in our people that will truly allow them to flourish.


Emergency Response Network

IEIYC founders started the ERN and occupy stoplights near checkpoints to warn folks about the retenes ahead. They held signs that urged undocumented drivers to mention AB353 if they didn’t have a license. Youth trained about 60 people throughout the I.E. to respond to emergencies, deportations, detentions, and intake. Members also followed up with families to connect them with legal resources and general support.



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UndocuHealth Conference launch

The IEIYC launched their 1st annual event where undocumented folks in the Inland Empire can access free or low cost medical, legal, and social services for them and their families. This was a one stop shop for the immigrant community understand the healthcare system through education along with creating pathways to access for county, state, or federal resources available to them.


AB60: Safe and Responsible Driver Act

Effective January 1st, 2015, the Department of Motor Vehicles can now issue a driver's license to any California resident who is eligible regardless of immigration status. AB 60 driver licenses are for individuals who are unable to provide proof of legal presence in the United States, but can provide proof of identity, California residency, and meet California’s DMV requirements. We supported educating the community about AB 60 and hosted workshops to teach folks how to apply for their license.




The Undocumented Mentorship Academy (UMA) begins!

IEIYC launches its very own, 8-week program that provides a space for undocumented youth to enjoy mentorship opportunities and foster relationships with community leaders. UMA youth engage in social activism, channel their creativity, healing activities, and build personal and professional development skills. Youth are awarded a stipend at the end of the program and often leave with meaningful experiences and connections.


SB54: California Values Act

Authorities may not use resources to investigate or arrest people for federal immigration enforcement purposes. Our schools, hospitals, courthouses, and law enforcement are restricted from cooperating with ICE. SB 54’s goal is to ensure that our state doesn’t fuel mass deportations, separate families, or spread fear throughout our communities. We've supported with legislature visits, phone banking, truth forums, and have called in law enforcement to ensure they are following through with implementation.

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The Health Ambassadors Program starts

Led by poderos@s throughout San Bernardino and Riverside Counties, they advocated for health care inclusive to ALL - no matter their status. The goal was to increase the use of available medical programs, clear uncertainties about public charge, bring attention to the California Values Act (AB54), and clarify any misinformation that prevented the undocumented population from seeking medical treatment. Rather than relying on systems, the ambassadors relied on each other as they mobilized for #Health4All..



SB 946: Safe Sidewalk Vending Act

Effective January 2019, SB 946 now legalizes and decriminalizes sidewalk vending across the state of California. The bill establishes parameters for local regulation of sidewalk vending and prohibits local authorities from imposing criminal penalties on sidewalk vendors. Sidewalk vendors are known to be a part of California’s lively culture, bringing our communities a variety of goods. We continue to protect and bring awareness to these vendors of the rights they have.

#Health4All Expansion

The Health4All Campaign began in 2013 when immigrant rights activists including the IEIYC, health care advocates, and community members came together to call for the expansion of health care to all Californians, regardless of immigration status. Undocumented immigrants were unfairly excluded from financial help for coverage through the Affordable Care Act. With our supporting efforts, Health4All Kids became a reality. Governor Newsom and the state legislature expanded full scope Medi-Cal to all children up to the age of 26, regardless of immigration status to be effective January 1st 2020.

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AB32: CA Ban of Private Prisons

Through mobilization, petitions, and organization efforts in the community, AB 32 was approved in 2019. AB 32 makes California the first state in the nation to ban the use of privately-run, for-profit prisons and immigration detention centers. Department of Corrections and Rehabilitation are barred from entering into or renewing a contract with private prison companies after January 1, 2020. California will no longer be able to hold people in for-profit prison facilities like GEO or CoreCivic by 2028.

1 in 10 working people in California are excluded from relief, making basic necessities impossible to reach just because of their immigration status. SafetyNet4All would guarantee an 8-week wage replacement program operating similarly to unemployment insurance, offering a weekly allowance to undocumented workers experiencing economic hardship. COVID-19 has further demonstrated the need to protect the well-being of undocumented individuals who have been at the frontlines of essential work. IEIYC remains alongside partners in the region to uplift the campaign by driving up to the state capitol, calling and writing letters to our state representatives, and amplifying historically excluded workers' voices to ensure that our immigrant community has a safety net to fall back on in time of need.


California Earned Income Tax Credit expanded to ITIN holders!

The IEIYC advocated along the CalEITC state coalition to include all tax filers to receive the benefits they've earned. CalEITC is a cashback tax credit that gives Californians their money back. In September of 2020, CalEITC was recently expanded to include folks who file their taxes with ITIN numbers. It now provides state relief to undocumented and mixed-status families across the state.


IEIYC becomes a trusted messengers in the statewide COVID-19 campaign!

Authorized by SB 115, IEIYC was identified as a community based organization and received funding to conduct COVID-19 safety outreach and reach disproportionately impacted communities. Still, our youth remain highly engaged in supporting interactive COVID-19 outreach efforts throughout the Inland Empire to connect the community with the newest developments in public health guidance, COVID-19 testing and vaccination resources, and provide trusted information to clarify myths and disinformation.





Coming out of the Shadows: An API undocumented and immigrant youth event!

In collaboration with the FAMHRC, we hosted an intimate space for API migrant & undocumented community members to discuss the cultural stigma that surrounds mental health and share their unique experiences of accessing mental health services in the API community. We were joined by a mental health professional who discussed topics surrounding immigrant API mental health, and provided resources available for further support. With more interactive workshops to come, this is a moment of learning, healing, and validation for our IE community.


Health4All: Older Adults Passes

After a decade of advocating the Heatlh4all Campaign in coalitions, Health for older adults (ages 50+) was passed in California. The estimated enrollment for this program was 235,000, and is currently at 347,000. This allows low-income elders to enroll into Medi-Cal regardless of immigration status.This marked a big victory covering the age gaps. In 2020 the passage of health4all young adults was granted for individuals between the ages of 18-25.


The Photovoice Project Introduced 

The photo voice is a project where individuals use photographs and/or video to capture their environment and experiences and express their thoughts about them. The UMA 2022 Cohort used Photography and journaling as a healing practice to help navigate their experience moving to the U.S., the challenges of their migration, and imagine their future.

This project was developed by IEIYC youth engagement coordinator and UMA mentor -Maelvi. It produced so many beautiful work that it became an intergral part of UMA and Herstory of Immigrant Youth.


The Launch of Immigrant Youth Fellowship Program

First of its kind for the inland region. Funded through the weingart foundation, the california endowment, Ceilo fund. For Immigrant Youth ready to begin their career in Social Justice and invest their skills in the region.

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