Former President Barrack Obama, granted temporary status to DACA beneficiaries to protect them from deportation as it sought the backing of Congress to grant them permanent status but the Donald Trump’s Administration is battling to overturn it.
A Federal District Court in California on Tuesday, January 9, ruled to halt the deportations as its presiding Judge; William Alsup described the move as ‘arbitrary and capricious’.
The DACA which shields young immigrants who arrived in the US as children to live and work without fear of deportation is among a number of immigration laws; the administration is seeking to change, even though President Trump himself had severally promised to protect DACA.
The others are the Executive Orders that threaten the deportation of another 11 million undocumented immigrants who are protected under the DREAM programme in addition to moves to build a wall to prevent Mexican immigrants into the country.
The laws had generated a week-long debate and discussions in the American media with Democrats and other Civil Society organisations fighting against it.
Addressing visiting Journalists from Ghana and five other countries, currently on a tour to the US, a Senior Fellow at the Centre for American Progress, Marshall Fitz said the laws would have significant impact on the country’s economy when approved.
The tour, organised by the International Center for Journalists (ICFJ) with funding from the United States Embassy in Ghana, afforded the journalists the opportunity to visit the Washington Post, Newseum, (a news museum) and the Foreign Press Centre.
The Journalists will be attached to newsrooms across the ‘Rust Belt’ States including Michigan, Ohio and Pennsylvania to cover a wide range of issues on immigration, health care and politics on the one year term of office of the Trump Administration.
Fitz said apart from the contributions of immigrants to the economy, it would cost the American taxpayer a whopping 5.5 billion dollars to successfully implement the new immigration laws.
Congress will on Friday, January 19, decide whether to vote for the release of funds or have a partial shutdown, a situation the Democrats would push to protect DACA, whilst the Republicans resist.
Fitz further expressed fears that the United Nations’ refugee protocols were likely to be violated by host countries if the United States should terminate DACA and DREAM and deport immigrants.
According him, America would send wrong signals to the rest of the world should the new administration go ahead to deport thousands of immigrants who were making significant contributions towards that nation’s economy.
Barely a week into his swearing-in in January 2017, President Trump signed bouts of Executive Orders seeking to review a number of policies including immigration laws that targeted the 11 million undocumented immigrants.
President Trump then ordered the Secretary of Homeland Security to recruit 10,000 more Immigration Officers to go after immigrants whilst the police were also to detain or apprehend undocumented immigrants.
But Fitz had taken a swipe on that order with the view that it was wrong for America to tow that line and leave immigrants to live in perpetual fear.
He described the statement made sometime last year by Immigration and Customs Director, Thomas Homan that undocumented residents in the U.S ‘should be uncomfortable and be looking over their shoulders’ because they were not safe as ‘unfortunate:’
The Director was reported to have further threatened that the government should not wait until undocumented immigrants committed crimes before they were arrested.
Fitz painted a scary picture of how some of the immigrants were afraid to seek medical attention for their children because the Immigration was everywhere to get them.
He said it was unfair that immigrants who had lived in America for many years were losing their Temporary Protected Status (TPS) on daily basis.
To him,’ America is a beacon of hope to the world and must continue to keep the measuring bar beyond reproach for the rest of the world to emulate’.