Governor Scott signs Education Equity bill into law!

Vermont Governor Phil Scott has signed into law a proposal crafted by Migrant Justice to expand access to higher education for the state’s immigrant community. The new “Education Equity for Immigrant Students” law will ensure that all Vermont residents, regardless of immigration status, have access to in-state tuition rates and need-based financial aid when attending public colleges and universities.

Migrant Justice built a coalition and worked with lawmakers throughout this year’s legislative session to advance this important proposal. The work was led by immigrant students and parents, who met with representatives and senators, built support, and provided testimony on their desire to build a future in Vermont.

The campaign supporting this proposal was capped yesterday by a press conference in the State House. Immigrant families, legislators, and supporters came together to celebrate the bill’s passage by the House and Senate and call on Governor Phil Scott to sign the measure. The press conference was covered by local CBS and NBC news, among others.

Heidy Perez Alfaro, an 11th grader at Milton High School, spoke about the impact the proposal would have for her and her community.: “I am here on behalf of all those students who had to end their education after high school and cut short their dreams. With this law, they will be able to go to college, study for a profession, and help others.”

She was followed by Olga Cruz, a dairy worker and member of Migrant Justice, who ended the event with a personal story. “When I got my GED three years ago and looked into continuing my studies, I was shocked by the cost and knew I would never be able to afford college without help. With this new law, higher education becomes a possibility for me and many others.”

Read yesterday’s press release for more information about the “Education Equity for Immigrant Students” law.