Portland - The Trump administration today announced the termination of the Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA) Program. The DACA program has served as a critical lifeline for nearly 800,000 young immigrants, or “Dreamers,” who came to this country as children and know the United States as their only home.
The ACLU of Maine issued the following statement in reaction to the announcement:
“There is no humane way to end DACA before having a legislative fix in place. Today’s decision to end the program is in response to a fake deadline and as part of a manufactured crisis.
Five years ago, the federal government made a deal with immigrant youth: As long as you pass a criminal background check you can live, study and work here. Hundreds of thousands of young people came out of the shadows and accepted the government’s offer in good faith and worked hard to build their lives here.
“Today, the government and President Trump went back on their word, threw the lives and futures of 800,000 Dreamers and their families into disarray, and injected chaos and uncertainty into thousands of workplaces and communities across America.
“Now, the fate of hundreds of thousands of young adults who call this country their home lies in the hands of Congress. Maine’s lawmakers must decide if they are on the side of Dreamers and our country’s foundation, or on the side of the ugly forces that helped to end DACA. These 800,000 lives are not pawns and Congress must step up and deliver a clean and bipartisan solution, such as the Dream Act.
“While this is a hard day for the immigrant community and America as a whole, we will continue to fight. Years of courage, sacrifices, and organizing won the DACA program in 2012. Nothing will deter these Americans and our allies in Maine and across the country from continuing to fight on behalf of their futures and holding those responsible accountable.”