The U.S. Supreme Court ruled 5-4 on June 18 that the Trump administration cannot shut down the Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals Program (DACA), which has allowed nearly 800,000 people, many of them in our community, to avoid deportation and remain in the U.S.
For weeks, months, and years, many of our community members have been living with extreme anxiety and fear of deportation. We have been posting updates of “No DACA Decision Today” up to twice a week for months now on our social media platforms. DACA recipients have been anxiously waiting for news, on top of dealing with the impacts of the coronavirus pandemic, and have been unable to plan their lives even several weeks out.
The decision by the Supreme Court alleviates those feelings for now, ruling the current administration’s actions as “arbitrary and capricious.” The decision states that the government did not have an adequate reason to put an end to this Federal program, but does not necessarily indicate that it would be morally wrong to end the program. This means our fight is not over and our advocacy efforts will not cease. This administration will try to attack us again, separate our families, and pit us against one another.
During the past years, Enlace Chicago and Beyond Legal Aid have worked together to assist our community members to apply for and renew DACA, which offers them work authorization and temporary protection from deportation. Our plan is to continue working together and support our community in fulfilling their goals.
For now, we celebrate this victory. Our community knows very well that DACA recipients are not just youth, but working adults, parents, healthcare workers, organizers, frontline workers, etc., and this decision brings us a momentary sigh of relief. We will regain our strength in this continued fight, not just for DACA recipients, but for immigrant justice for all. We feel this is the right decision and we celebrate it because our home is here!