By MARIA KANSO, News Editor
In light of the political motion over the Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals recently, president Schlissel joined 600 presidents of universities and colleges in signing a statement calling for the continuation and expansion of DACA.
“To our country’s leaders we say that DACA should be upheld, continued, and expanded. We are prepared to meet with you to present our case,” the statement said.
“This is both a moral imperative and a national necessity. America needs talent – and these students, who have been raised and educated in the United States, are already part of our national community. They represent what is best about America, and as scholars and leaders they are essential to the future.”
DACA is a program that started during Barack Obama’s administration in 2012, protecting 800,000 undocumented immigrants from getting deported. It allows them to apply for staying legally in the United States for two years and to renew their application after that.
The Trump administration announced that it wants to cancel the program, giving Congress a six month chance to find a substitution. Trump and House Minority leader Nancy Pelosi had a discussion on Thursday concerning DACA. The two talked about making DACA protection a law, tightening securities on the border and refraining from building a wall.
The Assistant Director in the Office of International Affairs, Dr. Emily Wang, said the status of “Dreamers” are not identified at the University of Michigan-Dearborn.
“I think that is a good thing because they are just like all of us,” Wang said. “They grew up in this country, they grew up in this culture. We have to have compassion about their situation.”
In addition to allowing recipients enroll in legal jobs, DACA gives them the opportunity to enroll in colleges and obtain a driver’s license. The program does not grant them a U.S citizenship, consequently depriving of them of certain benefits like Medicare and financial aid.
Wang said she hopes for the creation of a permanent policy that would include “Dreamers” in a legal procedure to reach U.S Citizenship or extended stay in the United States.
“This university is very supportive,” Wang said. “I’m sure we can voice our concerns and try to help them.”
People protected under DACA have to have been 16 years old or younger before arriving to the U.S and lived there since June 15, 2007. They also cannot be older than 30 when the policy was first enacted in 2012. According to CNN, Mexico has the biggest number of accepted applicants for DACA.