Local groups rally against Trump administration’s DACA announcement
SAN DIEGO (KUSI) — The Trump administration’s announcement Tuesday that the Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals program will be phased out prompted opposition from immigrant advocates in San Diego, who scheduled rallies to oppose the announcement.
"Young immigrants known as Dreamers represent the best of this country — they are innovators, educators, parents and children — and they belong in our community," said Andrea Guerrero, executive director of the nonprofit Alliance San Diego.
"The Trump administration’s decision to end DACA is shameful and puts an estimated 40,000 Dreamers in San Diego at risk in a dangerous and irresponsible game of chicken with Congress," Guerrero said. "Now Congress must act to pass a clean bill that codifies the DACA program without eroding protections for other communities or undermining our civil liberties."
Related Link: Trump Administration rescinds DACA program for young immigrants
She said her organization will help Dreamers and other immigrants by offering free legal consultations with immigration attorneys.
DACA has been available to immigrants without criminal records who were brought to the country when they were younger than 16 years old. Work permits issued under DACA must be renewed every two years.
Attorney General Jeff Session said former President Barack Obama instituted DACA through an executive order despite lacking the statutory authority.
The administration’s action gives Congress six months to come up with a solution for people illegally brought into the U.S. by their parents when they were children.
Related Link: Local leaders, groups react to Trump administration’s DACA decision
About 800,000 undocumented immigrants are currently protected under the program, including more than 223,000 Californians. Around 38,000 San Diegans were eligible for the program.
The San Diego congressional delegation’s three Democrats all blasted the decision.
Under the plan announced by Sessions at a Washington, D.C., news conference, the Department of Homeland Security will immediately stop processing any new applications for the program but continue renewing permits for anyone whose status expires before March 5 of next year.
The San Diego Immigrants Rights Consortium, Alliance San Diego and Ready Now San Diego scheduled a 6 p.m. rally at the County Administration Center, 1600 Pacific Highway, in support of DACA.