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Last week on Tuesday, September 5, 2017, President Donald Trump decided to end an immigration policy known as the Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals program or "DACA". Established in June of 2012 by former President Barack Obama, this program allowed certain individuals who had entered the country illegally as minors to obtain a renewable 2 year period of deferred action from any deportation action as well as the ability to acquire a work permit.

In accordance with the President’s decision to end DACA, the United States Immigration and Citizenship Services (USCIS) has now officially announced the changes and phase out of DACA on their website. Below, I have summarized the most important points of the USCIS announcement:

As you may or may not have noticed in the chart above, there is a 6 month moratorium. What this means is that there will be a 6 month suspension of activity regarding the repeal of DACA, which in turn allows Congress the ability to either save DACA as is, to reform the immigration policy in some other way, or to not act at all and allow DACA to expire. By some estimates, DACA is believed to have benefited hundreds of thousands of people. I personally know of many Thai and other Asian "dreamers" (people who were enrolled in DACA) that will be directly affected, not to mention their families. During his speech announcing the end of DACA, US Attorney Jeff Sessions, stated "we are people of compassion and we are people of law". Really? As with many policies and actions brought forth by the current administration, I again disagree with this decision. To think that for many of the dreamers, the United States is the only country they really know. These innocent children might have been born in another country, but they were raised here in the United States. By ending DACA, these dreamers will no longer have protected status, meaning they can be deported. Under Trump, this is not just a possibility, but most likely a certainty.  What happens then?  They will be deported to a country, where in reality, they will be strangers, don't speak the language, don't have family, etc. To be truly compassionate, you must be able to sympathize and have concern for the misfortunes of others, which by terminating DACA and not offering any other options, is the opposite of compassion. The law is not set in stone, and throughout history, has shown to be compassionate. What is not compassionate is the current administration in the White House. Let's just hope that Congress acts with more compassion than the President!




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Disclaimer: The information contained herein have been prepared for informational purposes only and are not to be considered legal advice unless otherwise specified. All opinions expressed are those of the author and in no way shall be associated with Sereechai Newspaper. If you have a specific question regarding your personal case, please contact the Law Offices of Joseph Chitmongran for a full consultation.