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Voto Latino Condemns Trump’s Order to End DACA

Washington, D.C. – Today, through an announcement by Attorney General Jeff Sessions, President Donald Trump ended the Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA) program, immigration legislation that protects 800,000 undocumented youth from deportation and grants them work authorization.

A coalition of ten states led by Texas Attorney General Ken Paxton sent a letter to the President in June, threatening to sue the federal government over the Obama-era program if it was not rescinded by September 5.

In response, Maria Teresa Kumar, Voto Latino President and CEO, issued the following statement.

“Attorney General Jeff Sessions made several false and misleading statements that are beneath the highest-ranking office of the country. He convoluted the tragic conflict in Central America with DACA, falsely stating that they are one in the same when in fact none of those young people qualified for DACA. Sessions and this Administration are on the wrong side of history and against the American people who overwhelmingly support Dreamers.

The President’s decision to end DACA is a moral and economic catastrophe. DACA recipients are the immigrants the Administration claims it wants: they speak English, have passed extensive background checks, and contribute billions to the economy. Dreamers have established their lives in the U.S., attended our schools, created jobs, and served in our military. The only home they know is America. It is cruel to strip Dreamers away from their homes with everything they have accomplished and threaten to send them to a country that is foreign to them.

The government made a promise to protect Dreamers and we must honor that promise. Dreamers did their part by coming out of the shadows and abiding by the terms of the DACA program. Yet the government has broken the trust established with the immigrant community and put at risk the future of so many innocent young people. This attack on our undocumented youth will have detrimental impacts that extend far beyond the immigrant community. It will spread fear across our nation, create distrust between vulnerable communities and the government, and hurt the national economy. Phasing out DACA will eliminate 685,000 workers from our nation’s economy and will cut $460.3 billion from our national GDP over the next ten years. Instead of using his power to pardon convicted criminal Joe Arpaio and attack law-abiding youth, the President should prioritize the interests of the American public and pass comprehensive immigration reform.

Comprehensive immigration reform is the civil rights movement of our time. Voto Latino will keep fighting alongside our allies until our country’s immigration system is fixed and we give our young people the personal security they deserve.