UC leaders pledge support for undocumented immigrant students

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San Francisco, Sep 6 (IANS) Leaders of University of California (UC) have denounced US President Donald Trump’s decision to end the DACA programme.

Hours after the US Department of Justice announced the move, both University of California (UC) President Janet Napolitano and UC Berkeley Chancellor Carol Chris on Tuesday pledged to offer continued support for UC students who are participants of this programme.

“This backward-thinking, far-reaching move threatens to separate families and derail the futures of some of this country’s brightest young minds, thousands of whom currently attend or have graduated from the University of California,” Xinhua quoted Napolitano, who was US Secretary of Homeland Security from 2009 to 2013 and had a part in formulating the DACA programme, as saying.

Napolitano called upon the US Congress to “immediately pass bipartisan legislation that would provide a permanent solution for these young people”.

“One that charts a secure pathway toward citizenship and allows these Dreamers to continue to live, work and serve the only country most of them know as home.”

Chris, on her part, noted that termination of DACA “not only undermines the lives and futures of undocumented students, but also places particularly at risk those currently with DACA status since they have submitted proof of their undocumented status to the government”.

“We will ask our Congressional delegation to move quickly to take action to provide protection for our undocumented students and give them a path to permanent residency and eventually citizenship.”

DACA participants, about 800,000 across the US, are referred to as “Dreamers” — a term derived from a legislative proposal known as the DREAM Act, acronym for Development, Relief and Education for Alien Minors.

DACA, acronym for Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals, was launched in June 2012 during the administration of former US President Barack Obama.

Under an executive order signed by Obama, DACA allows “Dreamers” to receive a renewable two-year period of deferred action from deportation and eligibility for a work permit by applying to the US Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS).

–IANS

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