DHS Rescinded DAPA and Protection of 3.7 Million Undocumented Immigrants
June 15, 2017
Washington, DC – Today, U.S. Department of Homeland Security Secretary John Kelly signed a memorandum rescinding the Deferred Action for Parents of Americans (DAPA), a program that would have offered protection to undocumented parents of children who are lawful permanent residents or U.S. citizens. President Obama introduced the policy in 2014, but it was blocked by a federal court in 2015 and was never formally implemented. If implemented, an estimated 3.7 million undocumented immigrants in the U.S. could have applied.
In response, LULAC National President Roger C. Rocha, Jr. issued the following statement:
“Today’s decision marks a terrible step backwards in the progress made over the years to protect the rights of immigrants in this country. Given that approximately 4.5 million children born in the U.S. have at least one undocumented parent, it is easy to see why rescinding DAPA is inhumane. Children across the country wake up every morning in fear of being separated from their parents and are forced to endure an immense amount of stress that is detrimental to both their physical and mental health. This is not how you invigorate the next generation of Americans. Keeping families together is not only good for immigrant communities; it is good for all Americans. Our nation was built on the backs of immigrants and their contributions are heavily woven into every inch of America’s fabric. Millions of undocumented parents have been in the United States most of their lives and contributed their hard work to this country day in and day out. Although President Trump has kept DACA in place, rescinding DAPA shows our community remains under attack. LULAC will continue to fight to keep families together.”
Today’s memorandum falls on the 5th anniversary of the establishment of DACA, or Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals, which allows undocumented immigrants who entered the U.S. as minors to attend school and obtain a work permit.
The League of United Latin American Citizens (LULAC) is the nation’s largest and oldest civil rights volunteer-based organization that empowers Hispanic Americans and builds strong Latino communities. Headquartered in Washington, DC, with 1,000 councils around the United States and Puerto Rico, LULAC’s programs, services and advocacy address the most important issues for Latinos, meeting critical needs of today and the future. For more information, visit www.LULAC.org.