Washington (Agenzia Fides) - On December 4, the U.S. District Court for the Eastern District of New York ordered the U.S. Department of Homeland Security to reinstate the entire Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (known as DACA) program by December 7, and to resume accepting first-time DACA applicants.
Bishop Mario E. Dorsonville, auxiliary bishop of Washington and chairman of the U.S. Conference of Catholic Bishops’ (USCCB) Committee on Migration issued the following statement: "We welcome the full reinstatement of the DACA program and are particularly pleased that with this ruling, youth who are first-time applicants are allowed to apply for the program for the first time since 2017. The DACA program directly benefits immigrant youth, their families, and the communities we serve. To all Dreamers, the Catholic Church continues to stand with you and will advocate with you to ensure you reach your God-given potential here in the United States".
Archbishop Dorsonville's statement, sent to Fides, continues: "While we are pleased that the DACA program will be restored, we note that only legislation that provides a path to citizenship will give Dreamers and their families true security and the ability to fully thrive. For this reason, we again urge the U.S. Congress to take up and pass legislation granting Dreamers a path to citizenship".
Finally, the Bishop expresses the hope that "the reinstatement of DACA begins a new chapter of possibility on the issue of immigration, including the introduction and passage of legislative reform by Congress that addresses our broken immigration system. We will continue to advocate for reform that values family unity, honors due process and the rule of law, recognizes the contributions of workers, protects the vulnerable fleeing persecution, and addresses the root causes of migration".
In September 2017, President Donald Trump repealed the Obama-era DACA and asked Congress to find a legislative solution, the Catholic Episcopate raised its voice in favor of the DACA beneficiaries. Since 2012, this program has allowed minors who arrived in the United States with their parents without legal permission to receive a two-year period of protection, and to be entitled to a work permit (see Fides, 21/02/2018). (CE) (Agenzia Fides, 9/12/2020)