Businesses, Law Enforcement Leaders, Healthcare Professionals, Academic Institutions, Non-Profits, Religious Organizations, Local Governments, and More Join Fight to Defend DACA
More than 125 major companies express alarm over economic impact of rescinding DACA
Peace officers and prosecutors across the country call DACA vital for public safety
Healthcare professionals fear ending DACA will endanger the mental and physical well-being of children
SACRAMENTO – California Attorney General Xavier Becerra today applauded the efforts of a coalition of hundreds of organizations and individuals fighting to protect the Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA) policy through amicus briefs filed with the U.S. Supreme Court. The coalition includes businesses, law enforcement leaders, former immigration and national security officials, healthcare professionals, organizations that represent individual Dreamers, academic institutions, non-profits, religious organizations, local governments, and more entities from across the country. The briefs were filed in support of litigation originally brought by California and other plaintiffs in consolidated cases seeking to defend the DACA policy.
“Since 2012, hundreds of thousands of Dreamers have openly participated in and contributed to our society without fear because of DACA,” said Attorney General Becerra. “These young Americans – many of whom have spent nearly their entire lives in the U.S. – enrich our communities as teachers, first responders, entrepreneurs, and so much more. I hope they can take heart in this outpouring of support from across the country. We stand united in this fight and we’re not backing down.”
In nearly 40 filings with the court, the diverse coalition raises a wide range of arguments in support of DACA. For instance, companies ranging from Ben & Jerry’s to Ernst & Young note that ending DACA will result in an up to $460.3 billion loss to the American economy over the next decade. Another brief highlights the risk of criminal prosecution and violence certain LGBTQ Dreamers will face if they lose their current protections and are subjected to removal to countries without the protections afforded in the United States. A coalition of law enforcement leaders maintains that ending DACA threatens public safety by thwarting efforts to build trust and respect between immigrant communities and peace officers, noting that, upon receiving deferred action, the vast majority of DACA recipients indicate they are more likely to report crimes to which they are a victim or witness. Universities like Stanford and MIT argue that rescinding DACA would deprive the United States of some of the world’s most promising students, unjustly sidelining them when many are on the verge of beginning their careers. Yet another brief raises the concern that ending DACA would likely damage the mental and physical health of children, with just the increased threat of detention and deportation alone being enough to result in symptoms of traumatic stress.
Since 2012, more than 800,000 young immigrants who were brought to this country as children have been granted DACA protections after completing applications and submitting to and passing a background check. Dreamers come from almost every country in the world, but many have never known any home other than the United States. Dreamers are among our newest college graduates, soldiers, nurses, teachers, and first responders who are boosting the economies and communities of our country every day. DACA recipients and their households are estimated to contribute nearly $9 billion in federal, state, and local taxes each year. Currently, there are nearly 700,000 active DACA recipients, more than a quarter of whom reside in California.
Attorney General Becerra has been a stalwart defender of DACA and has worked at every step to protect the rights of Dreamers living in the United States. In September, with DACA oral arguments set to be heard in November, Attorney General Becerra led a coalition of states in filing a response to the federal government’s opening brief in the consolidated DACA cases currently before the U.S. Supreme Court. This month, the Attorney General announced that more than half a million Dreamers have been able to renew their DACA protections as a result of a preliminary injunction obtained by California and others. Last year, Attorney General Becerra led a multistate coalition in supporting a lawsuit to protect Dreamers from unlawful termination of their individual protections. In 2017, following the Trump Administration’s decision to illegally rescind DACA, Attorney General Becerra led a multistate lawsuit in defense of the policy.
The California Solicitor General is currently set to defend DACA before the U.S. Supreme Court in November on behalf of the states seeking to keep the policy in place. More information on the status of California’s DACA litigation is available here.
Copies of the amicus briefs can be found in the online version of this release here.