There was standing room only at Rory Dolan’s Bar and Restaurant in Yonkers on Wednesday night as the Irish Lobby for Immigration Reform (ILIR) held a public meeting to inform the undocumented and their supporters about actions being taken on their behalf. 

Over 500 young Irish undocumented, greencard holders and Irish Americans packed into the function room of the Irish American bar and restaurant on McLean Avenue to hear from the ILIR committee and ILIR advisor, former Congressman Bruce Morrison. 

Morrison, who gave his name to the bill which enabled thousands of Irish people to obtain green cards in the 1990s, said that President Barack Obama had moved the immigration debate forward.

Morrison said it was unclear what kind of details a new bill would contain or how long it would take for it to actually become law but he feels that there is forward momentum on the issue. 

A young undocumented man from Co. Leitrim who asked to remain nameless said, “To be honest, I came here tonight thinking it was going to be all rubbish talk but Bruce Morrison really gave me hope,” he said. 

“I’m here myself nearly two years and missed being best man for my cousin a few weeks ago because there is nothing to go home for,” he said. 

“Now I’m hopeful. I realize I might be here for another few years before I get to go home again but at least if I know at the back of my mind that something is being worked on it’s worth it,” he added.