The Trump administration has decided to quash the dreams of hundreds of thousands of young people who were brought to the U.S. as minors to stay in the country, get an education and contribute to our nation. According to the Human Rights Campaign, it is estimated that approximately 75,000 of these Dreamers are LGBTQ, and HRC has endorsed the 2017 DREAM Act (H.R.3440/S.1615), which was introduced in Congress in July to explicitly authorize the government to stop the deportation of Dreamers. HRC has also signed on to a letter in support of Dreamers, which was signed by over 1,850 governors, state and municipal officials, civil organizations and faith leaders. For the estimated 75,000 LGBTQ Dreamers, the prospect of deportation contains an additional element of uncertainty, since they may be sent to countries that have poor LGBTQ human rights records.
In the announcement Tuesday, Attorney General Sessions called the Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals program, which since 2012 allows certain illegal immigrants who entered the country as minors receive a renewable two-year period of deferred action from deportation and eligibility for a work permit, “an open-ended circumvention of immigration law through unconstitutional authority by the executive branch.”
The Department of Homeland Security said no new applications for DACA will be processed. This is not surprising since the Trump administration had the agency rescind the Deferred Action for Parents of Americans last June, which allowed parents of Dreamers to stay in the country under work permits.
Dreamers currently enrolled in DACA will be able to continue working until their permits expire. Those whose permits expire by March 5, 2018, may apply for renewals by Oct. 5.