(UPDATED) Program for undocumented immigrants who came as children now faces six-month deadline.
Just days after President Donald Trump met with evangelical leaders to discuss the uncertain future of the Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA) program, the White House announced Tuesday that the program will end in March.
Attorney General Jeff Sessions called DACA—which allowed 800,000 young immigrant “Dreamers” to obtain temporary legal status and enter the workforce over the past five years—“unconstitutional” and an “overreach of the executive branch.” He said the program led to a surge of young immigrants at the border with Mexico, and ultimately allowed undocumented workers to take jobs from Americans.
The phase-out of DACA leaves those students and workers (including young Christian leaders) at risk of deportation—and puts pressure on Congress to pass immigration reform legislation in the meantime.
Two-thirds of American evangelicals favor giving work permits to Dreamers (66%) while fewer oppose the permits (22%), according to a Morning Consult/Politico poll released Tuesday evening. Almost 6 in 10 US evangelicals (57%) believe DACA recipients should be allowed to become citizens, while almost 2 in 10 (19%) believe they should be deported.
“Hundreds of thousands of Hispanic young people will be overcome with fear and grief today,” said Samuel Rodriguez, president of the National Hispanic Christian Leadership Conference (NHCLC), who has repeatedly lobbied in DACA’s defense as part of the President’s evangelical advisory board. [Rodriguez is also a CT board member.]
“Simultaneously, a multiethnic coalition of tens of millions of law-abiding US citizens will begin to put unrelenting pressure on members of Congress to provide a permanent …
Source: Christianity Today Magazine