An article in the Sept. 7 New York Times included the following quote from Sen. Richard J. Durbin, D-Ill., an original co-author of the DREAM Act (Development, Relief and Education for Alien Minors): “I’m hoping that this is a moment where we are forced to finally do something. We want to call this bill for a vote on the floor of the House and the floor of the Senate. I am hoping that we will have enough votes to pass it.”

In the same article, Sen. Susan Collins told the Times she believes there is “widespread bipartisan support for legislation that would provide some measure of protection to children who are brought to this country through no decision of their own.”

Let’s make these inspiring words a reality. To take away the Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals safety net without a remedy is not only cruel, it will cause chaos at a time when we most need the trust and the skills of such young people. We need immigrants, not just in Maine but all over the country. Congress has to provide a viable path forward for them and their families.

At the same time, many of us want Congress to do something to help American workers who’ve been left behind by technology. Instead of reducing taxes on corporations, couldn’t Congress incentivize corporations to provide apprenticeships and continuing worker training – as many European businesses do? It would achieve more skilled individuals and a more nimble workforce, and perhaps put to rest the myth that immigrants in our midst are “the problem.”

I am a registered Democrat and a political moderate, and I salute Susan Collins for speaking out on DACA. If all four members of the Maine delegation united as beacons of bipartisanship on this and many other issues, we might begin to hope again that “as Maine goes, so goes the nation.”

Priscilla Grant

Cape Elizabeth