Video: “Define American”, an initiative of Jose Antonio Vargas

I don’t think of I’ve done as “heroic” or “brave.” I told the truth, which is what we must finally do with immigration – Jose Antonio Vargas (@joseiswriting)

Jose Antonio Vargas, who wrote “My Life as an Undocumented Immigrant”, launched Define American, an initiative to bring “new voices into the immigration conversation, shining a light on a growing 21st century Underground Railroad: American citizens who are forced to fill in where our broken immigration system fails.”

Define American is dedicated to changing the conversation about immigrants in America who are an inexorable part of our communities and our society. Founded by award-winning multimedia journalist Jose Antonio Vargas, Define American harnesses the power of storytelling and social media to bring about greater awareness of and support for immigration reform.

The National Federation of Filipino American Associations (Naffaa) said it commends Vargas and completely supports his personal advocacy to get the DREAM Act passed. Vargas’ story is both “compelling and inspiring and just the kind of catalyst needed in getting the DREAM Act passed.

“The case of Jose Antonio Vargas and thousands of fellow DREAMers like him is no longer a mere legal issue; it has become a compelling moral issue which needs to be addressed,” declares J.T. Mallonga, NaFFAA”s national vice chair and a New York immigration attorney. He heads the Filipino American Legal Defense and Education Fund (FALDEF), which is advising Vargas on his legal options.

Rory Connor in the Huffington Post says “Jose Antonio Vargas is incredibly brave to risk everything he has accomplished in this country in order to tell the truth and to shine, yet another but still much-needed, light on the pressing need for comprehensive immigration reform in this country. He, and millions like him, have much to contribute to America — and without people like them, our country will be far poorer.”

You can follow Jose Antonio Vargas in Twitter- @joseiswriting

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BlogWatch receives the “Best Story” Award for the First Data Journalism PH 2015 from the Open Knowledge Foundation and Philippine Center for Investigative Journalism  for their story on “Aid Monitoring: Citizens’ Initial Efforts in the Wake of Typhoon Yolanda” . Forbes Philippines also received the same award.

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