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Despite Rising Costs for Students, Activists Push for Aid for Students Here Illegally

February 8, 2018 By Staff
Despite Rising Costs for Students, Activists Push for Aid for Students Here Illegally

Last year a similar proposal failed in the legislature.

Yesterday, Gov. Dan Malloy (D-Conn.) gave his final “State of the State” address, laying out his broad, progressive, and expensive vision of “fairness.” Reclaim Connecticut was quick to highlight that Connecticut’s economy and taxes were apparently not significant enough to make the governor’s speech.

Aside from criticism for ignoring the state’s fiscal problems, it seems activists for undocumented students were also upset. Some pointed to the fact that Malloy’s speech lacked comments about providing undocumented students with greater access to state aid.

As reported by WFSB, Camila Bortolleto, campaign manager for CT Students for a Dream (C4D) was “disappointed” with the governor’s speech:

“The fact remains that undocumented immigrant students in CT do not have equal access to higher education because they don’t have any access to any institutional financial aid, making college impossible for most families.”

Activists marked the governor’s speech and the launch of the legislative session with a press conference, once again renewing their calls for legislation providing undocumented students in Connecticut with access to “institutional financial aid” which all students contribute to regardless of their immigration status:

Advocates for the immigrant community in Connecticut on Wednesday called upon state legislators to pass an institutional aid bill that would provide undocumented students access to funds for higher education.

Just last year, a similar bill, that would have allowed access to financial aid for people here illegally, failed in the legislature. Opponents of the legislation highlighted that this would leave students living legally in the state with less financial support.

Higher education, notably the proposed cuts to UCONN, were a divisive issue during last year’s budget debate. With Connecticut’s economy lagging and taxpayers feeling the strain of one of the highest tax burdens in the nation, the availability of student financial aid is sure to be a heated debate in the legislature this season.