Donald Trump Ends DACA–800,000 Immigrants Affected

Zoe Liuag, Staff Writer

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After months of controversy and wavering, Donald Trump formally announced that he is overseeing an end to DACA, a program which currently protects over 800,000 American immigrants, and that Congress will have six months to produce a bill to replace it.

The Deferred Action for Childhood arrivals, better known as DACA, was initiated by the Obama Administration in 2012 in order to grant two-year renewable visas to children who had immigrated to the United States prior to the age of sixteen. This presents them with American work permits, allows them to obtain driver’s licenses and social security numbers, and protects them from the dangers of deportation. Recipients of DACA, called DREAMers, must be currently enrolled in school or the military, graduated, or obtained a GED. Additionally, they have to have immigrated to the United States prior to their sixteenth birthday and cannot have been over the age of 31 as of June 15, 2012. Currently, over 800,000 American residents benefit from this program.

The Trump administration, though previously reassuring DREAMers that no action would be taken to remove DACA, officially announced the program’s removal on September 5, 2017. Trump asserts this is for the overall protection of American citizens, following suit to his previous opinions regarding immigration laws. Additionally, he reassures those protected under DACA that the process will be gradual rather than instantaneous. Although no new recipients will be allowed to apply, Trump guarantees, “Permits will not begin to expire for another six months, and will remain active for up to 24 months.” He further divulges, “I am not going to just cut DACA off, but rather provide a window of opportunity for Congress to finally act.”

Other political figures have expressed varying opinions on the topic. According to Fox News, Attorney General Jeff Sessions agrees with Trump’s decision, criticizing Obama’s use of executive amnesty in initiating DACA. “Such an open-ended circumvention of immigration laws was an unconstitutional exercise of authority by the executive branch,” Sessions declares. However, democratic campaigner for the 2016 Presidential Election Bernie Sanders has a contrasting stance. “Taking legal protections away from 800,000 young people raised in this country is absolutely counter to what we stand for as a nation,” Sanders Tweeted on September 3, 2017.

DREAMers and allies alike are protesting Trump’s decision with numbers reaching the thousands. Protesters are gathering in Los Angeles, New York, Oakland, Midtown, and even in front of the White House, frustrated and worried for the future of immigrants in America. The hashtag #DefendDACA has even trended on Twitter.

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1 Comment

One Response to “Donald Trump Ends DACA–800,000 Immigrants Affected”

  1. Matthew Damian on November 7th, 2017 7:15 am

    It brings me sadness when I read what our leaders today are fighting for. Great piece Zoe, it was informative, interesting, and also nicely written!

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Donald Trump Ends DACA–800,000 Immigrants Affected