A bipartisan group of governors is asking Congress to protect individuals who were enrolled in the Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals program.
The administration of President Donald Trump announced its intention to end the Obama-era program that allowed protection from deportation for individuals who were brought into the country illegally as young children if they came forward and enrolled in the federal program.
North Carolina’s Roy Cooper is one of 11 governors who signed a letter asking Congress to “come together quickly to shape a bipartisan solution that allows our Dreamers to remain in the United States and continue their constructive contributions to our society.”
Several legislative options have been presented to allow the so-called Dreamers to retain their protected status, but Republicans in control of the House, Senate and White House have prioritized other issues, including passing a sweeping alteration to the United States tax code this week.
“Already, more than 12,000 Dreamers have lost their protective status and are susceptible to deportation,” the governors wrote to congressional leadership in a letter dated Wednesday, December 20. “This is not a theoretical peril, but in fact an immediate and urgent one, because more than 100 young people in our cities and towns are losing their protective status every day. Those numbers will accelerate dramatically without a legislative fix.”
Rallies have been held across North Carolina and the country issuing a similar message to lawmakers urging them to pass some legislative protection.
“We stand with these young American immigrants not only because it is good for our communities and a strong American 21st century economy, but also because it is the right thing for our nation to do.”
The governors added that the DACA enrollees have “subjected themselves to extensive background and security checks in order to work and attend college.”
The governors who signed onto the letter in addition to Cooper represent Alaska, Colorado, Massachusetts, Minnesota, Montana, Nevada, Ohio, Pennsylvania, Utah and Vermont.
You can see the full letter submitted to federal lawmakers here.