For Immediate Release: September 14, 2023
DACA Ruling Puts Dreamers’ Lives at Risk, Highlights Need for Immediate Action on Permanent Protections
Washington, DC–On September 13, Texas district judge, John Hanen, once again ruled against the Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA) program and called for the program to be terminated. The over 800,000 current DACA recipients will continue to be able to renew their protections as the case is appealed to the Fifth Circuit, but new applicants continue to be barred from accessing protections.
“Judge Hanen’s misguided decision is yet another devastating attack on DACA recipients, leaving them once again at risk. The DACA program honors our nation’s promise as a country of welcome, and it provides crucial protections to so many of our neighbors, congregants, classmates, coworkers and local leaders,” said Danilo Zak, Associate Director of Policy and Advocacy at Church World Service. “It is critical for the Biden administration to take any and all actions necessary to safeguard the program. But these young people have been living in legal limbo for far too long, left at the whim of harmful court intervention and anti-immigrant policies. Dreamers – and all undocumented community members – need bold leadership from Congress to provide a permanent path to citizenship and assurance they won’t be ripped from their families and communities.”
The DACA program has provided temporary relief from deportation to young people who came to the United States as children. The bipartisan American Dream and Promise Act (H.R. 16), which was introduced in the House of Representatives on June 15, would provide an opportunity to seek permanent status for DACA recipients, other Dreamers, and Temporary Protected Status holders. Judge Hanen’s ruling puts DACA recipients in danger of deportation and family separation, leaving them at the mercy of future misguided court decisions. As litigation progresses, Congress must act immediately to pass the American Dream and Promise Act and other permanent solutions that would provide an opportunity for U.S. citizenship, security, and stability for all our undocumented neighbors.