We’re Suing the Trump Administration for Taking DACA Away From People Who’ve Followed the Rules

In April, President Trump had a message for the 800,000 young undocumented immigrants who were given permission to live in the U.S. under President Obama’s Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals program: “The dreamers,” he said, “should rest easy.”

We now know that was a lie. In September, Trump announced he was ending the DACA program in six months, plunging nearly a million young immigrants’ lives into chaos. But Trump’s assault on DACA recipients began much earlier than previously known.

During his administration, federal immigration authorities have illegally stripped DACA protections from DACA recipients who have only been accused of a crime or found guilty of a minor misdemeanor that doesn’t affect their DACA status. Their protections have been taken away without any notice, any explanation, or any opportunity to respond. They now face deportation back to their parents’ home countries, even though America is the only true home they’ve ever known.

To stop the government’s abuses, we filed a class action lawsuit today on behalf of DACA recipients and the Inland Empire – Immigrant Youth Collective, a grassroots organization led by immigrant youth in Southern California. Our lawsuit seeks to hold the administration to the promises it made and ensure that DACA provides protection from deportation for however long the program exists.

The story of one of our lead plaintiffs, Jesús Alonso Arreola Robles , shows what’s at stake.

In February, Jesús  was wrongly arrested by a Customs and Border Protection agent for smuggling immigrants into the country and had his car and cellphone confiscated as well. After spending three weeks in immigration detention, Jesús finally went before an immigration judge who found that he wasn’t involved in smuggling and released him on bond.

Jesús thought his nightmare was over, but it was only beginning. A few days later, the government issued a notice that his DACA had been terminated without any explanation. Without a work permit, Jesús couldn’t make a living, and CBP has refused to return his car and phone. Now he faces the possibility of deportation to Mexico — a country he left when he was one year old.

What happened to Jesús , and many other DACA recipients like him, is unlawful. Under the DACA program, the government must give prior notice to young immigrants of their termination from the program and allow them to contest it. Instead, the government is revoking DACA status without due process, based on unsubstantiated suspicions of criminal activity or minor run-ins with the law, such as traffic offenses, even though these people have not violated the terms of the program and continue to be eligible for it.

No one should lose their ability to live and work in the United States after being merely accused of wrongdoing. Nor should they be stripped of a benefit as important as DACA without basic due process protections. People like Jesús  — who met all the requirements for DACA, came forward courageously and provided their information to the government, paid a fee, and planned their lives in reliance on the program — deserve DACA’s protections for as long as they continue.

But the reality is that DACA has never been enough. The Trump administration’s arbitrary decision to end the program makes it clear that we cannot leave these young people’s fate to whoever happens to be sitting in the White House.

Congress must act immediately to pass a clean Dream Act that would put people like Jesús on a path to citizenship and demand that the president sign it into law. Only the Dream Act will ensure that DACA recipients become full and permanent members of the country they know as their home. Only the Dream Act can protect these Americans from a president who tells them everything will be okay and then callously throws their lives into disarray.

If you or someone you know have had DACA unfairly revoked, please contact the ACLU at DACArevoked@aclu.org.

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Amelia Swift

Trump it’s not a great personality that’s why I am supporting to Obama because Obama its good president in America infect his time America much growth in any sector anyways I am providing assignment writing - AssignmentMode and also I am share this news to my website.

Anonymous

Obama is the absolute worse President America has ever had.

Anonymous

You cant even speak English huh?

Maria M.

I think the Obama Administration should have just made a path to citizenship for these young people instead of putting forth DACA. I'm glad that the Reagan Administration gave me and my family the opportunity legalize our status in this country back in the 1980's.
Thank you, ACLU, for taking up this fight!

Anonymous

Get out of America illegals, MAGA!!

Anonymous

That's funny. Last time, I checked this country was founded on immigrants. Pretty sure your ancestors were ones too. The hypocrisy. And do you really enjoy denying people the basic right to live? Make America great again my butt. If you really want to make America great again, please start with yourself and stop being so ignorant.

Anonymous

I don't know how you got through college without learning about the 3 branches of government but the Executive Branch, under any President, does not have the authority to change laws. DACA was not dropped because Trump wanted to drop it - it was dropped because the DOJ didn't believe it would pass a court challenge as its Unconstitutional. Trump actually angered his party and constituents trying to keep DACA in place but I'm sure you will just overlook that. Your lawsuit actually puts DACA at risk of ending even sooner. If the Supreme Court rules against you because DACA was created by the wrong branch of government in violation of the Constitution there is a risk that it will end right after the ruling. Go ahead, though, because I'd like to get rid of the foreigners that are trying to force their will on the US government against the will of citizens.

Anonymous

Amen!

Anonymous

Sort of outside of the ACLU's mission, but one of the root causes immigrants are being scapegoated by so-called Conservatives is regressive tax rates and an unequal justice system.

It would shock most Conservatives to learn that Republican icon, Dwight D. Eisenhower, was more fiscally liberal than Barack Obama on tax rates. Richard M. Nixon was more liberal than Obama on universal healthcare.

Why this matters: because this inequality has resulted in higher unemployment and lower wages in economically depressed areas. The great Warren Buffet once pointed out that his secretary pays a higher personal tax rate than he does. Many, not all, so-called Conservatives have chosen the unpatriotic action of scapegoating immigrants instead of moving closer to Eisenhower's tax rates - which would boost the economy and create good paying jobs.

There is a great documentary titled "Inequality For All" which points out that today's inequality is about the same as it was right before the Great Depression. The richest 1% are hoarding too much cash putting a drag on the economy. Working class Americans, especially the poor, spend almost every extra dollar buying consumer and luxury goods - unlike the rich - which creates jobs and boosts the economy.

Those that want to divide us have scapegoated immigrants which has resulted in violence and discrimination against good people. Anyone that loves immigrants needs to start talking about the economic and tax policies of Eisenhower and Nixon, that will reverse much of the unpatriotic scapegoating of immigrants.

Anonymous

I feel that giving undocumented students should be given a chance to live like any other kid

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