Be a voice for young immigrants as they navigate uncertainty

With several states, including California, suing the Trump administration to oppose the rescission of the Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA) program, Board of Supervisors Chairman Mark Ridley-Thomas will file a motion Tuesday asking Los Angeles County's lawyers to file amicus briefs in support of their litigation.

There had been speculation that Trump would use Democrats' wish to see Daca reinstated as leverage to ensure construction on a border wall, his signature campaign promise which remains far from becoming reality.

The Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA) programme was created under Obama's administration and it allows those who were taken to America as children illegally to have the right to temporarily live, work and study in the USA legally, once vetted. Few deserve our protection more than the DACA kids, who are American in every way but on paper. After DACA was introduced in 2012, the group eligible for the program saw an immediate improvement in their children's mental health: diagnoses of adjustment and anxiety disorders fell by more than 50 percent.

The letter, signed by UC President Janet Napolitano and all 10 UC chancellors, strongly urges DACA recipients whose permits are set to expire between September 5, 2017, and March 5, 2018, to apply for a two-year renewal.

"The administration's approach in rescinding DACA was the opposite of reasoned decision-making and thus is unlawful", she said.

Trump has said that if Congress does not act within the six-month window that he will take some sort of executive action. The program has 800,000 participants nationwide and about 6,200 in Minnesota. After that, there will be no more renewals, if the Trump administration's action stands. "Whether or not that is part of a DACA equation, or whether or not that's another legislative vehicle, I don't want us to bind ourselves into a construct that makes reaching a conclusion on DACA impossible".

To be eligible, applicants must have arrived in the US before they were 16 and lived here since June 15, 2007. Like DACA kids, I love America, the country where I grew up, made friends, went to school, and went to work. I hope that they will find some common ground and permit most of the Dreamers to remain in the US - but I don't see it being part of a broader immigration reform because of the six month window, and the pace at which Congress is known to pass legislation.



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