In 2012, President Barack Obama implemented a program called Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals, or DACA. The program gave protection from deportation and work authorization to a particular group of immigrants: those who had been brought here as without authorization as children within a specific period.
Beneficiaries of the program, called “Dreamers,” were allowed to come from the shadows and participate in American life.
In 2017, however, President Donald Trump decided to end the program. Although he said he agreed that Dreamers were completely blameless for having been brought to the U.S. without authorization, Trump argued that the program, created by executive order, was unlawful. He contended that protection for Dreamers needed to come directly from Congress.
At the same time, however, Trump made remarks that seemed to indicate other reasons for ending the program. Several courts have ruled against the Trump administration, determining that it had no rational basis for ending the program, which is required by law before it can be ended.
This week, the U.S. Supreme Court will hear oral arguments about whether the Obama administration exceeded its authority when it created DACA.
DACA is a popular program that protects innocent people
Microsoft, Apple and other major companies in the U.S. have filed briefs on behalf of the Dreamers. The main plaintiff in the case before the Supreme Court is the University of California system, where approximately 1,700 Dreamers are enrolled in school — and who could not be if the program ends.
Approximately 660,000 people are currently protected by DACA. These are people who have lived all their lives in the U.S. and have few or no ties to their countries of origin. Many don’t speak the language of their home countries and have little knowledge of norms and customs there. Here, they are working, going to school and making something of themselves.
In order to apply for DACA protection, Dreamers had to put their trust in the word of the U.S. government. They were asked to turn over private details of their lives and immigration statuses in exchange for protection. Now, they fear, the very information they turned over could be used to deport them.
Will the Supreme Court find that President Obama exceeded his authority in creating DACA, or that President Trump failed to provide the required rational basis for ending the program?
If you are interested in living and working in the United States, an experienced immigration attorney may be able to help you. Contact Yew Immigration Law Group. We have years of experience helping people with all types of immigration.