Trump dis­man­tling DACA, dream­ers and al­lies rally

Wisconsin Gazette - - Opinion -

The Trump ad­min­is­tra­tion Sept. 5 be­gan dis­man­tling the pro­gram pro­tect­ing hun­dreds of thou­sands of young im­mi­grants brought into the coun­try il­le­gally as chil­dren.

The White House dis­trib­uted talk­ing points to mem­bers of Congress that in­cluded a warn­ing: “The Depart­ment of Home­land Se­cu­rity urges DACA re­cip­i­ents to use the time re­main­ing on their work au­tho­riza­tions to pre­pare for and ar­range their de­par­ture from the United States.”

The pres­i­dent cam­paigned on a prom­ise to abol­ish the De­ferred Ac­tion for Child­hood Ar­rivals pro­gram.

Trump now has sent a time bomb to Repub­li­cans in Congress who have no con­sen­sus on how to defuse it.

The ad­min­is­tra­tion's an­nounce­ment had been an­tic­i­pated and ar­rived on a day of ac­tions by “dream­ers” and their al­lies across the coun­try.

In Wis­con­sin, in House Speaker Paul Ryan's dis­trict, Vo­ces de la Fron­tera and Youth Em­pow­ered in the Strug­gle staged a march Sept. 5 from Ryan's Racine of­fice to the Racine Uni­fied School Dis­trict of­fices.

Young im­mi­grants who could be im­pacted by the ad­min­is­tra­tion's de­ci­sion to phase out the Obama-era DACA pro­gram also went on a hunger strike to draw the at­ten­tion of Ryan to their de­mands.

“We just want to work hard to sup­port our fam­i­lies and com­mu­ni­ties, and Trump's elim­i­na­tion of DACA will shat­ter our dreams,” said Va­le­ria Ruiz, an or­ga­nizer with Vo­ces de la Fron­tera/Youth Em­pow­ered in the Strug­gle. “Speaker Ryan must move leg­is­la­tion to pro­tect DACA re­cip­i­ents, our fam­i­lies and all im­mi­grants.”

DACA was cre­ated by pres­i­den­tial ex­ec­u­tive or­der in 2012, af­ter Congress failed to act on im­mi­gra­tion re­form, es­pe­cially the Dream Act.

The pro­gram has shielded about 800,000 young im­mi­grants from de­por­ta­tion and af­forded them the op­por­tu­nity to work legally in the U.S. in the form of two-year, re­new­able work per­mits.

Ryan said he hoped the “House and Se­nate, with the pres­i­dent's lead­er­ship, will be able to find con­sen­sus on a per­ma­nent leg­isla­tive so­lu­tion that in­cludes en­sur­ing that those who have done noth­ing wrong can still con­trib­ute as a val­ued part of this great coun­try.”

Un­der the phase-out plan an­nounced by At­tor­ney Gen­eral Jeff Ses­sions, the Depart­ment of Home­land Se­cu­rity halted ac­cep­tance of new ap­pli­ca­tions un­der DACA.

Those with per­mits set to ex­pire be­tween now and March 5, 2018, will be able to re-ap­ply un­til Oct. 5.

For­mer Pres­i­dent Barack Obama called Trump's de­ci­sion wrong, self-de­feat­ing and cruel.

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