Chapel Hill Mayor Pam Hemminger took part in the Mayors’ National Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals Day of Action on Tuesday.
Town officials said Hemminger’s participation was to “show support for the DACA program.”
The initiative was instituted under President Barack Obama and its future has been in question as part of the immigration debate under President Donald Trump.
Hemminger and Carrboro Mayor Lydia Lavelle signed a letter urging Trump to continue the program to mark DACA’s five-year anniversary earlier this month.
“By allowing young immigrants to live and work in the United States without fear of deportation, the DACA program is allowing these young people to remain active participants in our communities and to contribute to our local, state and national economies,” Hemminger said in a release.
Hemminger added this could be a launching point for further immigration policy reform.
“We urge the continuation of the DACA program to provide the necessary protections for our immigrant community until Congress passes comprehensive immigration reform.
“These young people deserve a clear path toward a productive future and a chance, like other immigrants to America before them, to help lead all of us toward a brighter future.”
When signing the letter marking the program’s anniversary, Lavelle said:
“It was important and essential that I sign this letter on behalf of the Town of Carrboro. ‘Dreamers’ know the United States as home and more importantly, I want them to know Carrboro is their home. As they work to provide their families and pursue their dreams, Carrboro is committed to providing a safe and welcoming environment.”
Officials say nearly 800,000 undocumented youth who entered the United States before they turned 16 have enrolled in the program.