Washington Square News

DACA Decision Shows Lack of Leadership

By Allison De La Bastida, Contributing Writer

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Last Tuesday, President Donald Trump’s administration announced that the decision announced they would end the Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals program, known as DACA. Since 2012, the program has provided relief to young undocumented immigrants by supplying them with legal work status and protection from deportation.

Considering that, on average, these kids were roughly six-and-ahalf when they immigrated to the United States, it would be hard for them leave a life they’ve built for one that is only a distant memory. While most DACA recipients are Latinx, they are not the only ethnicity that faces an undetermined fate.

As the Washington Post states, “seven of the top 24 countries with the highest acceptance rate for DACA applicants are in Asia, Europe or the Caribbean.” It is reported that 90 percent are employed. So, if a partial goal of ending DACA is to substantially decrease the population with criminal records or tendencies, then the government might have to go further than blaming an ethnicity or even DACA.

Immigrants benefiting from DACA still contribute to the country by paying taxes and supporting different sectors of the government. Yet, they face difficulties because of their desire to achieve the American dream: to have a better life than their parents did.

We can’t blame an unaware six-year-old for moving to the United States. I think it is also to be highlighted that no one is to blame here — not even the parents. Just like them, most people would do anything for their family to provide them better future.

DACA has made the lives of undocumented immigrants infinitely better. It protects them by providing better paying jobs and improved work conditions. Congress now has the chance to to make up for failing to pass the DREAM Act, which would have resolved the undocumented immigration issue years ago. This is the time to make all the voices supporting DACA join together and defend the 800,000 kids that are counting on them.

While we are in the midst of recovering from a hurricane and are preparing to tackle another one, it seems to me that right now, the American public needs to encourage comfort and compassion to all members of the country as we deal with the aftermath of a disastrous storm. We’re no longer just divided politically, but it seems as if nature is giving us a physical representation of what those Facebook comments look like — a force to be reckoned with. This decision does nothing but further this.

Opinions expressed on the editorial pages are not necessarily those of WSN, and our publication of opinions is not an endorsement of them. A version of this article appeared in the Monday, Sept. 11 edition. Email Alison de la Bastida at [email protected]

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