NY AG Sch­nei­der­man Leads 16 States in Suit Over DACA

The Jewish Voice - - NEW YORK - By Sam Stein

On Wed­nes­day, Septem­ber 6, New York joined in a fed­eral law­suit with 14 other states and the District of Columbia, which will at­tempt to halt the Pres­i­dent's plan to dis­in­te­grate a pro­gram that pro­tects young im­mi­grants from be­ing de­ported.

The suit was filed in Brook­lyn fed­eral court by a coali­tion of 16 At­tor­neys Gen­eral led by New York At­tor­ney Gen­eral Eric Sch­nei­der­man to pro­tect De­ferred Ac­tion for Child­hood Ar­rivals (DACA) grantees. The law­suit de­tails how the Trump ad­min­is­tra­tion has vi­o­lated the Equal Pro­tec­tion clause of the Con­sti­tu­tion by dis­crim­i­nat­ing against DREAMers of Mex­i­can ori­gin, who make up 78 per­cent of DACA re­cip­i­ents; vi­o­lated Due Process rights; and harmed States' res­i­dents, in­sti­tu­tions, and economies.

In a state­ment, Sch­nei­der­man said, “Im­mi­gra­tion is the lifeblood of New York State. The Trump ad­min­is­tra­tion's de­ci­sion to end DACA is cruel, in­hu­mane, and dev­as­tat­ing to the 42,000 New York­ers who have been able to come out of the shad­ows and live a full life as a re­sult of the pro­gram. These DREAMers play by the rules. They work hard and pay taxes. Amer­ica is the only home they have ever known – and they de­serve to stay here and keep con­tribut­ing to our state and our na­tion.”

He con­cluded, “That's why we're tak­ing the Trump ad­min­is­tra­tion to court to pro­tect DREAMers and the New York em­ploy­ers who rely on them. It's clear that Pres­i­dent Trump's DACA re­peal would cause huge eco­nomic harm to New York – and that it's driven by Pres­i­dent Trump's per­sonal anti-Mex­i­can bias. At­tor­neys Gen­eral have not hes­i­tated to act to pro­tect those we serve, and I'm com­mit­ted to con­tin­u­ing to use ev­ery tool to pro­tect New York­ers.”

The law­suit was led by New York At­tor­ney Gen­eral Sch­nei­der­man, Mas­sachusetts At­tor­ney Gen­eral Maura Healey, and Wash­ing­ton At­tor­ney Gen­eral Bob Fer­gu­son, and filed by a to­tal of 16 At­tor­neys Gen­eral: New York, Mas­sachusetts, Wash­ing­ton, Con­necti­cut, Delaware, the District of Columbia, Hawaii, Illi­nois, Iowa, New Mex­ico, North Carolina, Ore­gon, Penn­syl­va­nia, Rhode Is­land, Ver­mont, and Vir­ginia.

New York is home to nearly 42,000 DACA grantees. There are ap­prox­i­mately 800,000 DACA re­cip­i­ents across the coun­try. Ac­cord­ing to the Cen­ter for Amer­i­can Progress, 97 per­cent of DACA grantees are em­ployed or go to school; they pay $140 mil­lion an­nu­ally in state and lo­cal taxes in New York, as the In­sti­tute of Tax­a­tion and Eco­nomic Pol­icy has de­tailed.

Gover­nor An­drew Cuomo said, “This cruel move to re­scind DACA feeds the beast of big­otry and un­der­mines the val­ues that built this state and this na­tion. End­ing this pol­icy will up­end the lives of hun­dreds of thou­sands of young peo­ple who have only ever called Amer­ica their home. This ac­tion is an­ti­thet­i­cal to ev­ery­thing we be­lieve as New York­ers and we can­not sit on the side­lines and watch the lives of these young peo­ple ru­ined. As we made clear be­fore this de­ci­sion, New York will sue to pro­tect the 'dreamers' and the state's sov­er­eign in­ter­est in the fair and equal ap­pli­ca­tion of the law”

The law­suit also in­cludes a num­ber of dec­la­ra­tions from busi­nesses, aca­demic in­sti­tu­tions, lo­cal gov­ern­ments, DACA grantees, and oth­ers im­pacted by the Trump ad­min­is­tra­tion's de­ci­sion to end DACA.

“Im­mi­gra­tion is the lifeblood of New York State.”

New York At­tor­ney Gen­eral Eric Sch­nei­der­man led a coali­tion of 16 At­tor­neys Gen­eral in fil­ing a suit to pro­tect De­ferred Ac­tion for Child­hood Ar­rivals (DACA) grantees.

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